Armando Peraza came to the US with fellow Cuban music legends Mongo Santamaria and Celia Cruz. They settled in the East Coast but Peraza came to the Bay Area and never left. Jazz legends like Stan Kenton, Frank Sinatra and Peggy Lee made Peraza their first-call percussionist, but his biggest contributions came from his songwriting and recording with George Shearing, Cal Tjader and Santana. His legacy lives on through his recordings and the many local musicians he mentored, among them John Santos, Karl Perazzo and Raul Rekow.
Bandleader Poncho Sanchez has delivered a potent mixture of straight ahead jazz, gritty soul and Latin rhythms for more than 30 years. He has released 25 records, including 1999’s Latin Soul, which included the Grammy® winning title track. Also paying tribute is an “A-Team” with three legendary percussionists with Peraza connections: Emil Richards, who played with Charles Mingus and George Shearing; Pete Escovedo, a major force in Latin music since the late ’60s; and John Santos, the Bay Area’s leading proponent of Afro-Cuban jazz.