Norberto Ortiz, Gabriel Rodriguez, Raúl Maldonado
Even though the members of San Juan Collective are young musicians, they play with the maturity and music knowledge of veteran Jazz players. One can tell their jazz vocabulary comes from years of listening and studying all the legends of jazz and other music styles.
They also have the experience of playing and recording with Puerto Rican master trumpet player, Charlie Sepulveda on both of his grammy nominated albums.
All that music knowledge and experience are fused perfectly to create the sound of San Juan Collective, a jazz trio with three of the best jazz musicians from Puerto Rico. Norberto Ortiz with his inventive improvisations on the tenor sax, reminiscent of other great sax players from Puerto Rico like Miguel Zenón and David Sanchez, Gabriel Rodriguez flawless melodic solos on bass and Raúl Maldonado energetic rhythms on drums.
The music of San Juan Collective is challenging, full of surprises and always interesting with tempo changes and creative, both melodically and harmonically.
In their music you’ll find diverse influences. The lullaby like intro of Child’s Play, before changing into a classic Bebop tempo. The Funk/fusion style of A mis maestros with virtuosic bass runs and a powerful drum solo. The ballads Melisa, Beauty Bar and Esperanza, the last one reminiscent of jazz classics like In a Sentimental Mood. The Bossa bass chords on Cycles. And of course the contagious Bomba and Plena rhythms of Sueño Despierto and Calle 6, showing the great fusion possibilities of native Puerto Rico rhythms with Jazz.
Tracks: The Beautiful, Child’s Play, A mis Maestros, Esperanza, Sueño Despierto, Cycles, Calle 6, Beauty Bar, El Tata, Melisa, El Hobito
Artist's Website: http://sanjuancollective.com/
Reviewed by: Wilbert Sostre