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Joe McCarthy

Pan American Nut Cracker Suite

Angelface Records

The Pan American Nutcracker Suite's distinct beauty comes from the ingenuity that McCarthy, conductor and co-arranger Vince Norman, and the New York Afro Bop Alliance Big Band bring to the nuance of arranging that incorporates so many musical styles. Utilizing the adaptability of the clave, the effervescence of Afro-Latin artistry and the measured brilliance of a band of seasoned, like-minded musicians, Joe McCarthy and the New York Afro Bop Alliance Big Band's The Pan American Nutcracker Suite is a brilliant reinvention of a timeless classic for generations to come.
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Steven Brezet

World Traveler

Circle 9 Records

World Traveler deserves repeat spins on your turntable not just because it swings so hard that you might have to bolt your speakers to the floor, but because Brezet has encrypted this music with subtle innovations that speak to more great things to come. Believing "music needs innovation and to be refreshed but with respect for the tradition," is why you'll find World Traveler so meticulously designed, sprinkled with djembe and timbau solos, and Brezet working with veteran Venezuelan musician Oscar "Chucky" Cordero to charge maximum wattage into every composition.
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Josean Jocobo

Herencia Criolla

Self-Release

Balancing the musical heritage of Merengue de Palo Echao, Bachata, and Gagá with contemporary Jazz and the work of legendary Latin composers, Herencia Criolla deepens the musical dialectic on the enduring ingenuity of Dominican music. Cinematic, anthropological, a chronicle of the heritage that sustains him, Herencia Criolla flows from field recordings to vivid compositions featuring Jocobo's trio, drummer Otoniel Nicolas and bassist Daroll Méndez, with guest appearances by alto saxophonist Miguel Zenón, bassist Ramón Vázquez and percussionists Magic Mejia and Félix Garcia.
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John Santos

Art of the Descarga

Smithsonian Folkways Records

At its core, Santos’s journey with descarga has always focused on the gal- vanizing force behind the political philosophies of how Afro-Caribbean people create music. Born into this culture, Santos has never asserted a proprietary claim: “This music really belongs to everybody. It’s music! It emanates from the heart of the Americas, which is not Nebraska or Oklahoma: it’s Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean. All of the Americas have a common history that unites us, and it’s a violent history, of colonialism, slavery, and the genocide of indigenous people.”
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Doug Beavers

Sol

Circle 9 Records

Sol is more than just the manifestation of meaningful influences gathered throughout a career. Here are songs that express the refreshed identity of an artist willing to experiment by molding cherished genres into a hybrid form of popular music. Honoring soul and R&B from the 70's and 80's, Sol revisits the science of making hits from addictive bass riffs, and the endurance of African rhythms that continue to permeate every aspect of American music. "I'm not trying to prove a point," Beavers says, "I'm just writing music with strong structures, and being clear about what I'm trying to say." 
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Oscar Hernandez

The Latin Jazz Project

artistShare

Spend any time with SHO's music and you'll immediately hear the secret to their success. Whether on stage, recording in the studio, or collaborating online, they're live - no overdubs, no post-production tricks, just astute composing and arranging shaped by masterful musicianship and seasoned improvisation. Traditionally SHO's albums rally around the strength of how separate parts of the band interact. Horns glide into one voice, percussion circles arrangements with elaborate layers of rhythms, while vocalists clear the air with harmonic precision and the punch of the sonero.
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