Eddie Palmieri: Sabiduria

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Eddie Palmieri
LABELS: Ropeadope
ALBUM TITLE: Eddie Palmieri
WORKS: Sabiduria
PERFORMER: Eddie Palmieri (piano), Joe Locke (vibraphone), Anthony Carrillo, Little Johnny Rivero, Luis Quintero (percussion), Luques Curtis (bass), Obed Calvaire (drums)

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The Palmieri sound, a jazz-inflected take on Latin music, was first heard in New York in the early 1960s when Puerto Rican brothers Eddie and Charlie hit the scene. Nine Grammy awards and around 50 albums later, 80-year-old pianist Eddie is still serving up his own brand of salsa picante with a side order of modern jazz. Growing up
in the South Bronx, one of Palmieri’s early influences – as well as charanga dance music – was bebop pioneer Thelonious Monk. It still shows through here, with his choice of deliberately odd notes and eccentric off-kilter runs.

The guest line-up for this celebration is a real bonus. On top of a hard driving rhythm section, given extra heft by Ronnie Cuber’s baritone sax, rides quicksilver vibist Joe Locke. Contributions from A-list soloists Donald Harrison Jr on tenor sax and protean electric-bass player Marcus Miller make for a delirious Latin party.

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Garry Booth