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Latin for Travelers / My Man In Sydney

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Album Review

Drummer Bobby Previte's Latin for Travelers quartet burns up the track on this compilation of live dates done at the Basement Club in Sydney, Australia. Their endless summer, rockish sound is tempered by jazz improvisation and taken to lofty heights by the raw power of the participants, including double-plus keyboardist Jamie Saft, electric guitarist Marc Ducret, and electric bass guitarist Jerome Harris. All six of these extended jams are composed by Previte, where the identity and sound of the band are quickly established in the hip 6/8 funk with organ from Saft and "Telstar"-type guitar via Ducret on "Albuquerque Bar Band." Floating guitar and bass hand off to Previte's drum solo, free rock running into an R&B shuffle, with a grooving bridge during the title cut. Twangy and galloping introductory guitars by both Harris and Ducret develop into more driven organ-fired funk as "London Duty Free" shows a bundle of intensity and purpose, while an indirect ethnocentric core lurks under distinct African tom-tom beats in the process of "Bear Right at Burma." The coolest track is the urgent, hip swing of the neo-boppish head-nodding "Deep Dish Chicago," using a thin but not flimsy, bluesy guitar melody with insistent two-note organ incursions whose combined themes cement this total out-and-out jam. The closer starts as a choogling, very long drum solo in repeated rhythms, bordering on tedium, before Saft's Fender Rhodes improv breaks Previte out into rockish, raucous swing. A one-note guitar riff, another drum solo, and a small bass insert leads back to Saft's pungent organ for one final swoop. This is the first of two volumes planned from these performances, and where these set excerpts are plenty potent, subsequent issues may or may not be better, but one would expect consistency between this and the next CD. Thing is, this band has a sound all its own, best heard live and well documented on this surface-scratching effort. ~ Michael G. Nastos, Rovi


Born: 16 July 1957 in Niagara Falls, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

A series of albums recorded in the late '80s established Bobby Previte as one of the relatively few jazz drummers who are also composers of significance, alongside Jack DeJohnette, Bob Moses, and a handful of others. In 1973, Previte received his B.A. in music from the University of Buffalo, where he studied percussion with Jan Williams. He moved to New York City in 1979, where he collaborated with many of the musicians who would put "downtown" on the map. His first album as a leader was Bump the...
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Latin for Travelers / My Man In Sydney, Bobby Previte
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