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Vince Tampio: Sound Plan

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This time I would like to introduce an album from Vince Tampio, a professional trumpeter, arranger, composer, and multi-instrumentalist based in Philadelphia, PA.

He released his album “Sound Plan” on November 7, 2017, which is an instrumental jazz album that combines acoustic and electronic elements from Psychodelic Rock and Electronic Dance Music. Something new to me, and so I had to ask Vince to give me some background about this album, which he was generous to share with me and which I will also share with you.

Vince started to work on this album in 2013, but it took him almost 4 years to finish his work because he produced three other albums in this time and Sound Plan had just to wait until it became ripe.

He wrote, performed, engineered, and produced all the trumpet, synthesizer, acoustic guitar, and bass parts. Drum programming came from <radioaddict> and Ben Diamond played much of the live percussion.

Inspiration for the album came from different sources like Pink Floyd, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Isaac Hayes and Stevie Wonder.

The album begins with the song “Sonic Ember”, a combination of two songs that share parts of a chord sequence. The first part “Sonic” is played almost exclusively on electronic instruments and after 5:30 mins the second part “Ember” starts where we hear Vince playing the trumpet the first time, a soft melody with long notes accompanied by a guitar only.

The dichotomy of electronic and acoustic instruments is set aside in the next song “Slimery”, where the trumpet plays melody and improvises over a combination of electronic background, bass, an acoustic guitar and programmed drums. The tune stays in it’s mode during the trumpet solo and culminates after 6:20 mins when the synthesizer takes over.  Vince explained to me that this composition is the only one which he played live with his band Quatrane.

The third song on the album is called “Afternoon” and starts with an acoustic guitar playing a simple rhythm. This song has the most metric modulations. The percussion plays an important role here  and has a solo part before the trumpet takes over. The tune was written on a summer day on the beach and has this feeling of easiness.

The next song “The Phantom Sweet Potato” is my personal favorite, very groovy with focus on the acoustic instruments guitar, percussion and trumpet. It was written specifically for this album and I hope it becomes also a tune that is played live.

The fifth song “LT” changes back to the electronic dominated sound, the guitar and percussion however play an important role.

The album closes with the title song “Sound Plan” where all the elements we have seen before (acoustic guitar, percussion, trumpet and the electronic instruments) are combined one more time into the typical blend of this album. The song reaches a peak after 2 mins with the finish of the trumpet  solo. An extremely long fade out ends the album.

So how should you listen to this record? Take your time and listen to the complete songs or even better to the complete album. Don’t jump quickly from one song to the next one. It’s really worth to do it this way. I hope that you can enjoy it with the additional information given. I have to admit that I felt a little bit overwhelmed with this kind of music, but Vince was so generous and patient and explained the album very well to me, which helped me to discover this facet of contemporary jazz music.

You can listen to the album on Spotify:
https://open.spotify.com/album/4IcNK9h5JO41uLhj4ufs3D

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If you want to know more about Vince please check out his website:
https://www.vincetampio.com

Dafnis Prieto Big Band: Back To The Sunset

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Cuban-born drummer, composer and bandleader Dafnis Prieto releases the Dafnis Prieto Big Band’s debut album, “Back to the Sunset”, on Friday, April 6, 2018.

Prieto composed and arranged nine tunes for the album,  honoring his musical heroes and mentors including Eddie Palmieri, Chico O’Farrill, Bebo Valdés, Jane Bunnett, and Michel Camilo.

The line-up of the band features 5 saxophones, 4 trumpets, 4 trombones, piano, bass, drums and percussion, almost like a classic big band, the sound however is true Latin jazz.

The CD starts with “Una Vez Más” featuring Brian Lynch on trumpet and is dedicated to Tito Puente, Eddie Palmieri & Brian Lynch. After a long intro, starting easy with bass, drums and percussion, the volume and intensity increases by adding more registers and the trumpet starts with the melody. We hear a Eddie Palmierei-inspired piano by Manuel Valera and a great trumpet solo by Brian Lynch.

The second song “The Sooner the Better” is dedicated to Egberto Gismonti & Jerry González and is a slower tune, but with great dynamics.

“Out Of The Bone” surprises with different modes, starting with a steady beat and switches to a faster Samba-like groove.

The title song “Back to the Sunset” features Henry Threadgill on alto sax and is dedicated to Henry Threadgill & Andrew Hill. It starts very elegiac and gives the soloist the necessary space to perform in his unique and free style.

The 5th song “Danzonish Potpourri”, dedicated to Bebo Valdés, Art Blakey & Jane Bunnett returns back to Latin groove. The melody is nice and easy but the arrangement is very sophisticated changing grooves and dynamics.

“Song for Chico” featuring Steve Coleman (alto sax), dedicated to Chico O’Farrill, Arturo O’Farrill & Mario Bauzá, comes with a great horn section arrangement before Steve Coleman starts with his solo.

“Prelude Para Rosa” (dedicated to Bobby Carcassés & Dave Samuels) begins with a contemporary-jazz piano solo before the band takes over. After tempo and style change from Swing to Latin the main theme is built-up starting with the sax section and culminating after 4 minutes with the trumpets. 

“Two For One” is dedicated to Buddy Rich, Chucho Valdés & Hermeto Pascoal has again a long intro, based on a drum-vamp and shows the band playing under full speed with just a little time to take a breath during the saxophone and piano solo. At the end we get to hear a excellent drum and percussion solo.

The last song “The Triumphant Journey” is dedicated to Dizzy Gillespie & Chano Pozo and the main theme is one of the highlights of the CD. Great melody, excellent arrangement and played perfectly. The first solo goes to the trumpet, obviously, followed by saxophone and trombone solos and ends with the magnificent theme.

This CD is really intense and eruptive, you feel the energy and the power of the music and the musicians. The arrangements are excellent and the band brings together some of the world’s best Latin jazz musicians, many of whom have previously played Prieto’s music in his other bands.

The band  strives to make an impact as a leading Latin jazz big band recording and performing for years to come, and to provide a platform for Prieto to write for big band, a format he fell in love with as a child.

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Here is the complete line-up:

Mike Rodríguez, Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Nathan Eklund, Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Alex Sipiagin, Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Josh Deutsch, Trumpet, Flugelhorn

Román Filiú, Alto Sax, Soprano Sax, Flute, Clarinet
Michael Thomas, Alto Sax, Soprano Sax, Flute, Piccolo
Peter Apfelbaum, Tenor Sax, Soprano Sax, Melodica
Joel Frahm, Tenor Sax, Soprano Sax
Chris Cheek, Bari Sax

Tim Albright, Trombone
Alan Ferber, Trombone
Jacob Garchik, Trombone
Jeff Nelson, Bass Trombone

Manuel Valera, Piano
Ricky Rodríguez, Acoustic & Electric Bass
Roberto Quintero, Congas, Bongos, Percussion
Dafnis Prieto, Drums & Music Director

Special Guests:
Brian Lynch, Trumpet (Track 1)
Henry Threadgill, Alto Sax (Track 4)
Steve Coleman, Alto Sax (Track 6)

Produced by Dafnis Prieto & Eric Oberstein

For More Information on the Big Band
visit http://dafnisprietobigband.com