Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Mccoy Tyner & Latin All-Stars
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Fresh from a world tour, McCoy Tyner's Latin All Stars headed straight to the studio to preserve the memory. The nine-member powerhouse includes Steve Turre on trombone and shells, Gary Bartz on alto and soprano, Avery Sha... more »
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Fresh from a world tour, McCoy Tyner's Latin All Stars headed straight to the studio to preserve the memory. The nine-member powerhouse includes Steve Turre on trombone and shells, Gary Bartz on alto and soprano, Avery Sharpe on bass, Ignacio Berroa on drums, Giovanni Hidalgo on percussion, Johnny Alemendra on timbales, Claudio Rodito on trumpet and flügelhorn, Dave Valentin on flute, and the maestro on piano. The opener, "Festival in Bahia," is a great showcase, complete with a vamp tailor-made for solo stretches of improvisatory machismo. Tyner's rendition of "Poinciana" (a tune so immortalized by Ahmad Jamal that almost no one else courts it) is done sans horns and sounds fresh. Unfortunately, the direct-to-two-track mode of recording does not do justice to such a capacious ensemble: the percussion loses much of its depth, the trombone sounds by turns strident and muddy, the clarity of the sax is inconsistent, and the shells fare even worse. Even this lamentable circumstance does not rob the album of its momentum: Kenny Dorham's classic "Blue Bossa" is taken at a tempo that would burn a dancer to dust, and Mongo Santamaria's "Afro Blue" is mined for all it's worth. The pianist is, of course, the crowning glory: singularly thrilling in approach and execution, he remains inimitable. --Karen Bennett
Tyner couldn't be finer
Jan P. Dennis | Monument, CO USA | 07/22/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"McCoy Tyner has an innate feel for Latin-jazz, especially of the Afro-Cuban variety. Indeed, he has played in such settings since at least the sixties, and has toured extensively with Latin-jazz musicians. Though his playing is not technically Cuban-derived, it nonetheless meshes seamlessly with Afro-Cuban styles.This disc, a companion to his great record of 1981, La Leyenda de la Hora, is among Tyner's finest. The band, made up of equal parts jazz and Latin musicians, features some of the very best of each, including Ignacio Berroa (a carryover from La Leyenda) on drums, Dave Valentin on flute, Gary Bartz on alto sax, Avery Sharpe on bass, Claudio Roditi on trumpet, Johnny Almendra on timbales, Giovanni Hildago on congas, and Steve Turre on trombone and shells. The latter especially shines throughout.
One of my favorite moments is his great conch solo on "Afro Blue," the Mongo Santamaria classic, here given a very spirited reading by the whole band. He also uncorks a great trombone solo on "Festival in Bahia." But he saves his best for "La Habana Sol" (the only number from La Leyenda included here) where he lets loose with a burning solo entirely in keeping with the fiery treatment this magical piece receives. Indeed, it's hard to imagine this record without his huge presence.A word must also be put in for the tremendous contributions of the three Latin percussionists, Berroa, Almendra, and Hildago. The latter blasts off with a stunning short solo, perfectly placed and timed, on "La Habana Sol," while Berroa shows he's grown with both a deeper groove and greater coloration than ever.Tyner's playing, however, shines brightest. He's absolutely on with his trademark single-note runs, often taken at breakneck speed. But it's not just that he "plays a lot of notes." He knows exactly where to place each one for optimal tonal and rhythmic value. And his ensemble playing always brilliantly punctuates even as it pushes the other musicians forward. Indeed, this disc contains some of the very finest Latin-jazz ensemble playing anywhere on record.I'd have to disagree with those who say this record fades after the--admittedly remarkable--opener, "Festival in Bahia." To these ears the ensemble and solo brilliance keeps up throughout the entire disc, with high spots being "Poinciana," "Afro Blue," "La Habana Sol," and "Blue Bossa," the latter featuring a burning flute solo by Valentin where he pulls out all the stops and proves himself to be, not counting Robert Dick, the reigning master of his instrument. Bartz, Sharpe, Roditi, and Turre also contribute some amazing moments when they trade fours with the percussionists.If you have any affinity at all for this kind of music, you will want to add this disc to your collection."
Great first track...the rest ain't so great
LGwriter | 07/30/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I heard the Festival in Bahia on the radio and ordered the CD that day. Unfortunately the rest of the album is not so strong. As long as we're talking stars, I'd say the first song is 5 stars the rest of the album gets 3. There's some good playing, and the rhythms are definitely swinging, but the tunes aren't so memorable."
Superior Latin jazz
LGwriter | Astoria, N.Y. United States | 11/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"McCoy gets into this Latin jazz thing with guns blazing. He's a marvel here; his modal playing is perfectly suited to the material. Many of the other musicians are Latin American, with the exception of the brilliant Gary Bartz on sax and Avery Sharpe on bass. Mongo Santamaria's Afro Blue gets a smokin' treatment--listen to Giovanni Hidalgo and Johnny Almendra on percussion. And Kenny Dorham's Blue Bossa swings and sways--its lyricism blossoms with these guys.The original tunes here are also great; McCoy stretches out on A Song for Love and on the first track, Festival in Bahia. The mix of Cuban and Brazilian influenced material is inspired as well.Everybody plays great here. Dig it!!"