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Encantado with Laksar Reese by Jesus 'Chuchito' Valdes

Pianist Jesus "Chuchito" Valdes is true Cuban Royalty. The Grandson of Bebo Valdes and the Son of Chucho Valdes, Chuchito is carrying on the tradition of genius and innovation. His new release "Encantodos" features Australian saxophonist Laksar Reese. The two met each other in Cancun Mexico where Chuchito lives and the concept for Encantados was birthed. They visit many styles of Cuban music with a Jazz Flair. Their rendition of Coltrane's Giant Steps burns on top of a traditional six/eight rhythm. There is a free meditative piano solo based on Ellington's A Train. Chuchito's original "Bolero in Chicago" is heartbreakingly beautiful. The stark melody line played in unison by piano and tenor with modern harmonic changes gracing the traditional Bolero form. The original "Andriego" was written by Chuchito for his father with horn lines he credits to his father's style. There is a salute to traditional Folkloric Guaguanco Montuno with a traditional Descarga and vocals. Danza de Los Gigantes, another original by Chuchito is based also on 6/8 rhythms featuring Laksar Reese on Soprano Sax in a free style meditation and is dedicated to the spirits of all the musicians who have led the way. Tres Lindas Cubanas, a Cuban Son is given a traditional classic reading with Laksar on Flute. All of the musicians are stellar. Bassist Hector Silviera is steady and lyric. Chuchito showcases his considerable technique with restraint, concentrating on the ensemble interaction and the musical interpretation. This is a sweet, joyous, masterful, well balanced effort with the focus on the music, respecting the past and heading into the future. This is Encantado - Enchanted.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Jesus 'Chuchito' Valdes
  • CD Title: Encantado with Laksar Reese
  • Genre: Latin Jazz / Latin Funk
  • Year Released: 2001
  • Record Label: Town Crier Recordings
  • Tracks: Homenaje Bebo, Bolero en Chicago, Andriego, Son Cha Cha Cha, Guaguanco/Montuno, Impressions of Take the A Train, Giant Steps, Danza de los Gigantes, Tres Lindas Cubanas.
  • Musicians: Jesus Chuchito Valdes Jr (piano); Laksa Reese ( Tenor and soprano sax, flute); Tito Carillo (trumpet, flugelhorn); Hector Silveira (Bass); Jonathan Paul (Acoustic Bass)track 7 only; Frankie Ocasio (Congas); Carlos Quintos (Congas, vocals); Jose Ormaza (drums); Javier Gonzales (drums, timbales, maracas).
  • Rating: Five Stars
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