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Pa'lante

Ray Vega

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Album Review

Ray Vega moves from Concord to Palmetto for Pa'lante, an energetic sextet outing. The trumpeter is deeply immersed in bop and post-bop, as he makes clear with imaginative Latin arrangements of Charlie Parker's "Yardbird Suite," Duke Jordan's "Flight to Jordan," Wayne Shorter's priceless "El Gaucho," and, most audaciously, the first movement of John Coltrane's A Love Supreme. (Vega's choice of cornet for the Shorter tune is interesting.) Alto saxophonist Bobby Porcelli extends the post-bop theme with an original titled "K.D.," dedicated to Kenny Dorham and based on "Alone Together" changes. Vega contributes four originals — all good, but not as memorable as the covers. Bassist Boris Kozlov shines on the mid-tempo, minor-key "Prayer of Jabez" and a stinging arco introduction to the Coltrane piece. Pianist Igor Atalita, drummer Willie Martinez, and percussionist Wilson "Chembo" Corniel also weigh in with strong playing throughout. ~ David R. Adler, Rovi

Biography

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

At the age of 12, when Ray Vega saw Machito & His Orchestra play in Central Park, the South Bronx native decided he was destined to play the saxophone. Enrolled in his school's music program, Vega received the bad news that the school was out of saxophones, so he reluctantly switched to trumpet. A year later he was being taught by Down Beat poll winner Jerry Gonzales, an experience that changed Vega's opinion of the instrument forever. Studying the trumpet throughout his high-school years gave...
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Pa'lante, Ray Vega
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