Jazz Caliente

Saturday 5PM-6PM

Where jazz meets Afro-Cuban, Afro-Brazilian, Puerto Rican, and Pan-American rhythms.  A lively tour of the diverse world of Latin Jazz hosted by Robin Llloyd.

Lionel DECOSTER / CC BY SA 3.0

Trombonist Steve Turre grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area where, he says, he "absorbed daily doses of mariachi, blues and jazz."  

Daniel Shen / CC BY-SA 2.0

Us Latin jazz fans love our rhythms. They are the special sauce in the music that moves us.  Here's one of the rhythm makers who goes well beyond time-keeping, and transports us to different worlds: Airto Moreira.

Havana Theatre
“club español” by Pablo Trincado is licensed under CC BY 2.0 bit.ly/2qnc53Q

Jazz Appreciation Month wraps up once again with International Jazz Day on April 30, and the annual All-Star Global Concert.   This year's host city for the concert is Havana, Cuba.

The pioneering Cuban jazz band Irakere nurtured some of Cuba's leading musicians who went on to gain international fame.

Mack Avenue Records

There's a new wave of young Cuban jazz pianists who are pushing boundaries while still honoring the traditions of Cuban music and the modern masters like Chucho Valdes and Gonzalo Rubalcaba.  

Meet Harold López-Nussa, your guide for "El Viaje," the journey.

KCTS9

Juan de Marcos and the Afro-Cuban All Stars return to Seattle on the night of Wednesday April 12 for a show at the Moore Theater.  We're delighted that they've also agreed to perform for a live studio session that afternoon, broadcast live at 12:15 p.m. on KNKX.

Juan de Marcos is marking 20 years since the amazing success of the Buena Vista Social Club recordings and the resulting world tour that made stars of "los viejos," the elder musicians who paved the way for modern Cuban music.

courtesy of the artist

Second cousin to the Latin jazz we play on Jazz Caliente is the blend of jazz, Latin, soul and funk that grew up in the streets of New York in the 1960s.  Called Latin soul or boogaloo, it's rhythmic, fun and immensely danceable.

Bex Wade

Peruvian music is a blend of Andean, West African and Spanish influences.  Add some American jazz to the mix, and you've got something unique.  You can hear it on Saturday Jazz Caliente, courtesy of innovative musicians like guitarist Richie Zellon and trumpeter Gabriel Alegria.

Pixabay / CC0 public domain

This week on Jazz Caliente, we'll hear the sweet sounds of violins.  The violin came to Latin jazz through a style of music called "charanga," as did the flute.  And just like the flute, the violin's history in Cuba has deep roots.

Bebeto Matthews / AP Photo

Latin jazz flutist Dave Valentin died March 8; he was 64.  I remember very well the first time I heard him play on his album "The Hawk."

drummercafe.com

I was disheartened to see a recent Facebook post about master percussionist Giovanni Hidalgo.  It said he was having medical problems which have prevented him from performing for the last couple of years.  The future of Latin jazz without contributions from Mañenguito (Hidalgo's nickname) would be unthinkable.

SFJAZZ

Saxophonist Miguel Zenón brings his quartet back to Seattle on March 1, for a performance at PONCHO Concert Hall at Cornish College for the Arts.  Their most recent recording, "Típico," focuses on the quartet itself, celebrating the magic that happens when a band creates together for more than 15 years.  We'll hear some of that magic this week on Saturday Jazz Caliente.

americansabor.org

This week on Saturday Jazz Caliente, we'll hear the theme song of the orchestra known as Machito and his Afro-Cubans.  The piece is called "Tanga," composed by trumpeter and arranger Mario Bauzá.  This "Tanga" had nothing to do with skimpy underwear; the song title was derived from an African word for marijuana.

Jazz at Lincoln Center

The Grammy Awards show will be televised this Sunday, Feb. 12, at 5 p.m. PST.  This week on Jazz Caliente, we're featuring music from all five Grammy nominees for Best Latin Jazz Album, and believe me, I'd be hard-pressed to pick a "winner" this year.  They're all outstanding recordings.

Geraldine Wyckoff

The Cultural Exchange Pavilion at this year's Jazz and Heritage Festival in New Orleans will feature musicians from Cuba, like revered jazz pianist Chucho Valdes (the "Duke Ellington of Cuba") and timba stars Los Van Van.  The "heritage" part of this annual festival is all about acknowledging the many international influences present in New Orleans culture, food and music. 

Most jazz fans are familiar with Brazilian samba and bossa nova, since those musical styles have mixed with jazz beautifully for decades.  But Brazil is a large diverse country with many other regional rhythms and musical styles that also blend nicely with jazz.  

Seth Wenig / AP Photo

On this week's Saturday Jazz Caliente we'll hear some of maestro Eddie Palmieri's original music for the documentary "Doin' It in the Park," a film by Bobbito Garcia about the pick-up basketball game culture in NYC's parks.

sonando.org

Get to know two of the local Latin jazz groups featured this week on Saturday Jazz Caliente: Sonando and the vintage Brazilian jazz outfit called Choroloco.

"El flautista cubano Orlando Valle 'Maraca'" by Maracavalle is Licensed under CC BY 3.0 bit.ly/2hYevpM

The flute may not be as prominent in jazz as trumpet or saxophone, but a well-played flute solo can really punch up a Latin jazz tune.

The flute came to Latin jazz through a number of paths.  Here are examples of the two main contributors:

Mark Peterson/Corbis

In Tito Puente's musical career that spanned six decades, he earned the nickname "El Rey" (The King), three times:  King of the Timbales,  Mambo King and King of Latin Jazz.  

waynewallacelatinjazzquintet.com

You wouldn't necessarily expect Bloomington, Indiana to be a hotbed of Afro-Cuban, Caribbean and South American jazz.  

Think again.  

International Music Network

Cuban pianist are known throughout the world as among the best.  This week, we'll feature some of the modern-day Cuban piano stars:  Chucho Valdes, Omar Sosa and Emilano Salvador.  

The piano arrived in Cuba in the late 18th century and was quickly elevated to favored instrument status, especially for popular dances like the guaracha and contradanzas.  Thus began the Cuban piano tradition. 

Emma-Lee Photography

Female instrumentalists of all types have been part of jazz since its inception, but for many of them getting recognition and acceptance has been a long, hard road.  Even more so with Latin jazz, it seems. Times and attitudes do change, albeit slowly.  

Here are three talented, dedicated, and creative women making their mark in Latin jazz, and serving as mentors and inspiration for an upcoming generation:

Robin Llloyd 2013

Everyone is talking about Cuba.  

Fidel Castro's death combined with uncertainties about the incoming U.S. administration's stance on trade and aid in Cuba has put the island in the spotlight once again.  

It's a land of contrasts, that's for certain.  It's also a compellingly beautiful place with warm, funny, smart, resilient people.

We were delighted to have the effervescent Adriana Giordano bring her EntreMundos Quarteto into the knkx studios for a live Jazz Caliente.  This popular Brazilian-flavored band has fans all over the Northwest, and they’re celebrating the release of their long-awaited CD, “Brasilidade.”  Enjoy!

Latin Jazz is rich with compelling percussion sounds.  Many of the percussion instruments originate from Africa, and are tied to spiritual and religious ceremonies.  Here are a couple of favorites:

lpmusic.com

Latin jazz musicians believe in showing respect to the elders and originators of the music.  This week we feature 95-year-old conga drum master Candido Camero and we remember Cuban composer, arranger and bandleader Chico O'Farrill.

Lena Adasheva

This week we feature music from some of the nominees for Best Latin Jazz Album for this year's Latin Grammys.  The awards show will be on November 17 in Las Vegas.

pachecopiano.com

On this debut of the hour-long Jazz Caliente, I feature some music from Cuban pianist/composer Jorge Luis Pacheco.  The wonderful folks who joined me on the 88.5 Travel Club trip to Cuba in 2013 were amazed at this young man's performance at the Havana jazz club La Zorra y El Cuervo.  He's performing in Bellingham on Sunday, in Olympia on Wednesday, Nov. 9 and popping in to the Royal Room on Thursday, Nov. 10 to join the show with the Entremundos Quarteto and the Brazilian drum and dance group VamoLá.

Evening Jazz host Abe Beeson will present The New Cool, Saturday afternoons from 3 to 5. The show will feature artists pushing jazz to cool new places, artists such as Kamasi Washington, Snarky Puppy, and Northwest favorite Industrial Revelation. The show will feature players who have come of age in the 21st century understanding hip hop, punk rock, modern soul and electronic, and have incorporated those styles into their music.

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