Mister Latin Jazz Introduces Summer Fest Latin Acts

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To help shed some light on this year’s Latin offerings at Summer Fest, we consulted the source himself: Arturo Riera, the San Jose Jazz board member otherwise known as “Mister Latin Jazz.” In this blog post, he walks us through the top-notch Latin jazz and salsa acts you’ll encounter throughout downtown San Jose August 9-11.

I have 3 dates I look forward to each year: Father’s Day, my wedding anniversary and San Jose Jazz Summer Fest! Those 3 days in August are the culmination of a year’s worth of meetings, conferences, strategy sessions, concerts and listening parties trying to improve each year on the festival’s Latin and salsa programming.

This year, we decided to move from a Latin Jazz Stage and take the bold move to spread Latin across many stages and make Latin Jazz part of our festival DNA!

Our 2013 Latin Jazz lineup 2013 includes 2011 MacArthur Prize winner Dafnis Prieto. With his Proverb Trio, Prieto will lay down an Afro-Cuban groove. His keyboardist will layer in his own melodic and bass grooves before their spoken word artist flows on top. Each song will be entirely improvised – now that’s jazz!

Yosvany Terry is one of New York’s hottest straight ahead Sax men but he is all Cuban, all the time. He comes from Cuba’s #1 family of the fokloric instrument called the chekere. It is a beaded gourd played by the entire Terry family, including his brother and bassist, Junior Terry. Terry’s music will explore the synthesis of Afro-Cuban religious music and jazz. Like his chekere, Terry’s music will travel from Africa to the Americas and end up in San Jose. Terry is a master of many song styles so the one thing to expect is a world-class, and historically relevant, performance!

In today’s music world, it’s impossible to keep a big band alive. In the 50’s, bands like Tito Puente and Machito played for the dancers of the Mambo era almost nightly. At the same time the Chico O’Farrill big band was performing and writing Latin Jazz charts that were just as challenging as the Stan Kenton Band and other straight ahead big bands. Arturo O’Farrill continues his father’s big band tradition with New York’s top musicians swinging Latin jazz hard — people get ready!

Local legend John Santos and his Sextet will allow all comers to sit in on a Latin Jazz Jam backed up by his band of heavyweights after their first set is finished. Education is a big part of San Jose Jazz’s focus and the ability to sit in with the John Santos Sextet reflects our commitment to education and Latin programming throughout the festival. Santos is a global expert on music of the African Diaspora so if you can’t sit in listen real hard to his words and music!

Coming up next…..Brazilian and SALSA 2013!!!!

Watch Mister Latin Jazz provide some background on Latin acts on video in front of our Summer Fest Main Stage below.

Which Latin act are you most excited to see at this year’s Summer Fest? Let us know by leaving a comment below! To keep up with Latin jazz action from around the Bay Area, tune into Mister Latin Jazz TV on YouTube.