Thursday, August 1, 2013

Roberto Fonseca Yo Concord 2013

An incredibly engaging look at Latin jazz transformed to American jazz with a dazzling display of soulful and soul filled textures from a global perspective.
Brent Black / @CriticalJazz

For over fifteen years Cuban-born pianist and composer Roberto Fonseca has been reinventing the sounds of Cuba and the Afro-pop influences with the more traditional form and functionality of American jazz with a splash of the more contemporary soul vibe found in the next generation of musicians. Musical diversity in the case of Fonseca is far more than an acquired taste as this legendary pianist may have received his most expansive musical training while touring with the Grammy Award - winning collective known as the Buena Vista Social Club.

Yo is the latest and perhaps one of a half dozen most influential Latin recordings over the past decade. An amalgam of traditional acoustic instrumentation with state of the art electronica makes this the natural evolution of where the Cuban Afro-Jazz movement is heading and make no mistake, Roberto Fonseca is leading the way.

Yo transcends standard categorization as is often applied to Latin jazz and normally incorrectly which is a sad indictment on music education here in North America. This sonic exploratory is uniquely personal in both development and presentation as it signifies Fonseca's persona as a cultural by product of his own experiences. From a duo of African strings to the more traditional clave which is the rhythmic soul and heartbeat that is Cuban popular music, Fonseca displays a keen sense of vision and lyrical purpose deeply rooted in the past yet keeping a watchful eye on the future.

"El Mayor" is a brief interlude paying tribute to Fonseca's older brother who instilled in him a passion for American funk while "Quien soy yo" is a dynamic multi-cultural feast for the senses with hints of Brazilian flavor thanks to an impeccable performance by guitarist Munir Hossni.

Yo which translates into "I" or "Me" in Fonseca's native Spanish is an epic release that smashes cultural barriers while blazing a new trail for new artists as well. Traditional music merging with a global soul has Yo firmly planted as the cultural crossroads for a global audience.
Five_star_rating : Five stars ratings Stock Photo

Tracks: 80's; Bibisa; Mi Negra Ave Maria; 7 Rayos; El Sonadore Esta Cansado; Gnawa Stop; El Mayor; JMF; Asies La Vida; Quien Soy Yo; Rachel. Remixes: Bibisa; 80's