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Michel Camilo

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Album Review

Michel Camilo was one of the most stimulating jazz pianists to emerge in the mid- to late '80s. His powerful two-handed attack (full of impressive technical skills), his knowledge of both jazz and Afro-Cuban music, and his willingness to constantly take chances make each of his solos into an adventure. This Portrait set, his first date as a leader to be made available domestically, features Camilo in a pair of trios with either Marc Johnson or Lincoln Goines on bass and Dave Weckl or Joel Rosenblatt on drums; Mongo Santamaria makes some guest appearances on congas. On the spirited outing, Michel Camilo sticks to originals, with the exception of "Blue Bossa."

Biography

Born: 04 April 1954 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Genre: Jazz

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

An exciting and high-powered virtuoso pianist, Michel Camilo came from a very musical family (all nine of his uncles were musicians). Originally playing accordion, he switched to piano when he was 16. After moving to New York in 1979, his song "Why Not?" became a hit for the Manhattan Transfer and caught on as a standard, and "Caribe" entered the repertoire of Dizzy Gillespie. Camilo, who worked with Paquito d'Rivera's band for three years (cutting an album with "Why Not?" as the title cut), recorded...
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Michel Camilo, Michel Camilo
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Contemporaries