Sunday, September 02, 2012

Arturo Sandoval concert review

Arturo Sandoval
So last night I went to see Cuban jazz trumpeter Arturo Sandoval at the CNE Bandshell. I know what you're thinking. The CNE is crazy. Why would you go there? Normally I don't go there. But I saw former Irakere pianist Chucho Valdes and then sax player Paquito D'Rivera so I wanted to complete the troika by seeing Sandoval. I've been a fan since the 70s. And the great thing about musicians of this calibre is their music is still fresh. It's not a nostalgia trip. The concert was free with admission and the CNE let us in free because I'm disabled. But I would pay to see Sandoval. Like every Cuban jazz musician I have ever heard, Sandoval is heavily influenced by the legendary Dizzy Gillespie. And because he plays the trumpet, this is especially true of Sandoval. In fact, his latest CD is a big band tribute to Gillespie. Sandoval's other major influence is the Cuban dance band music he listened to when he was growing up. I was thinking of 50s bandleader and singer Beny More in particular. I wasn't familiar with most of the band musicians except for sax player Ed Calle. Calle was born in Venezuela and grew up in Miami. He has recorded as a leader but usually works as a sideman and session musician. So he is very familiar with Sandoval's brand of jazz. The other guys were great too. I just don't remember any of their names. I wish they would give out programs. All I can say is if this show had been at the Toronto Jazz Festival or Koerner Hall, I would have been happy to pay for it. But it was free. You can't ask for more than that.

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