A contemporary jazz trio influenced by Afro Caribbean, Classical and World music.
"San Juan Collective" just released their first album but who ever hears them play with skill and maturity, might think they are already veterans of jazz...
The first CD of the group that bears the same name, shows a clear sense of good jazz. Collectively, the musicians are supported with creativity without fanfare. In the individual, imagination and impressive maturity Tiko Ortiz tenor sax, the brilliant bass solos Rodriguez's "Calle 6" and "Beauty Bar" and the constant rhythmic creativity of Maldonado."
'An outstanding debut'
By Rafael Vega Curry,
El Nuevo Día
10/11/10 Albums By Wilbert Sostre
CD Review: San Juan Collective
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.
Artist's Website: http://sanjuancollective.com/
Reviewed by: Wilbert Sostre for jazz times community writers
San Juan Collective is a contemporary jazz trio from Puerto Rico that represents a new breed of jazz players. Two times Latin Grammy Nominees for their work with Charlie Sepulveda & the Turnaround, this saxophone, bass and drums trio based their concept in collective improvisation using original compositions as a base to give free rein to their creativity. Each musician brings all his influence from jazz, Afro Caribbean to classic and world music bringing a unique sound to the trio.
This musicians had participated in various recordings and had played with different artists individually and as a part of a same group were they met and start to jam as a trio to experiment with various compositions and concepts, and creating the San Juan Collective.
NORBERTO "TIKO" ORTIZ - TENOR SAX. Born March 22, 1977. BM from Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music in 2003 and got a Masters Degree Magna
Cum Laude from Florida International University in 2005. Norberto has played with Eddie Palmieri, Arturo Sandoval, Nestor Torres, Chocolate Armenteros, 2004 Jazz Cruise with Kevin Mahogany, Eguie Castrillo at Heineken Jazz fest 2006, Charlie Sepulveda “salsa y toros, Dax, France 2004 and 2005”, Heineken Jazz fest 2007; OzzFest with Puya 1999. Ortiz is also a music professor at Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music, and Universidad de Puerto Rico.
GABRIEL RODRIGUEZ – ELECTRIC BASS. Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico April 15, 1974, attended the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico and the
Interamerican University. The versatility of his performance has led him to perform with world’s best Latin jazzmen. Among this group stands out Charlie Sepulveda, Dave Valentin, Giovanni Hidalgo, Jerry Gonzalez, Paoli Mejias , Angel (Papo) Vazquez and many others. His credentials include also numerous presentations as side musician for Carli Muñoz (acoustic trio), Nissi Fusion/Jazz Quartet, PR Dixieland Ensemble, Marco Pignataro, Holograma, Causa Comun, Gary Keller, Alex Acuna, Kenny Werner, San Juan Collective and many others.
His musicianship includes performance with both, acoustic and electric bass. Gabriel has written educational tips columns and a manual for the development
of harmony and technique. He is member of the Puerto Rico’s Conservatory of Music jazz program faculty where he teaches electric and acoustic jazz bass.
RAUL MALDONADO - DRUMS.
Drummer/Composer and Two Times Latin Grammy nominee Raul Maldonado for his work with"CHARLIE SEPULVEDA AND THE TURNAROUND" May 2008, and ‘’SEPULVEDA BOULEVARD’’ April 2009 in which Raul recorded all drums, have received excellent reviews and been nominated for a Latin Grammy as Best Latin Jazz Albums of the year.
Ever since childhood Raul has been fervent researcher of the Latin roots rhythms. BA in Drums Performance at Interamerican University, also studied at Drummers Collective in New York with Kim Plainfield and Michael Laurence. Among his teachers and mentors are Anthony Carrillo, Giovanni Hidalgo and Hector Matos and Paoli Mejias.
Raul has played, recorded and toured with masters like: Giovanni Hidalgo, Dave Valentin, Anthony Carrillo, three time Grammy winner and platinum recording artist Olga Tañon, Erick Figueroa, Juancito Torres, Marco Pignataro, Humberto Ramírez, Luis Perico Ortíz, Richie Ray & Bobby Cruz, Edsel Gomez, Batucada Porto Brazil, Julito Alvarado, Brazilian Deborah Brum, Cuatro virtuoso Christian Nieves (Ricky Martin), and recently with Paoli Mejias, Bernie Williams, San Juan Collective and many others.