Top notch latin jazz/bossa nova (with a few dull moments)
Nobody important | 06/22/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Once again, another sad case of a great jazz album going un-noticed. I bought this one on a whim because I'm a McCoy Tyner fan, not knowing what to expect, and I'm glad I did. More surprisingly, I was just as impressed with the rhythm section on this album as I was with McCoy. Avery Sharpe (bass), Aaron Scott (drums) and Raphael Cruz (percussion) prove to be a formidable presence, capable of keeping up with McCoy at his best, and even occasionally upstaging him! (Claudio Roditi's trumpet playing is good, but not the highlight here). This is not pure latin jazz, nor pure bossa nova (they are, after all, distinct forms that each appear here), which may explain its status, but it will not disappoint. It is at its best when it is upbeat, and faithful to the latin jazz/bossa nova traditions, but a few of the slower moments betray the foul odor "smooth jazz" (a form of music I find almost too banal to mention). Luckily, those moments do not seriously detract from otherwise high-quality musicianship. However, a warning: do not take my endorsement of this album as an indication that any work by this particular combo should be sought out. I picked up "Autumn Moods" after noticing the presence of the same personnel, and was disappointed by some of the most boring muzak imagineable. "Blue Bossa," however, while it is by no means McCoy's best work, makes the grade."