Leo Blanco (p), Lionel Loueke (g), Donny McCaslin (ts), Peter Slavov (b), Antonio Sánchez (d), Bakithi Kumalo (el b), Didier Malherbe (duduk), Steve Shehan, Jackeline Rago, Diego Alvarez (assorted percussions)
On this stunningly virtuosic release, pianist and composer Leo Blanco explores the fertile sounds of his homeland and other realms. Blanco boasts a wealth of educational background and practical experience in both popular and classical music styles.
His early years in his home city were marked by successes as a conservatory student and involvement in Merida's youth symphony orchestra. By the age of just 17, he was Caracas-bound to further his growth as a musician, arranger and composer. Then it was off to Boston's Berklee College and The New England Conservatory, where his reputation blossomed. From then on he's been playing with several of the most acclaimed musicians. This project features some notable playing by saxophonist Donny McCaslin, drummer Antonio Sánchez and up and coming guitarist Lionel Louke, a native of Benin who join Blanco on this 9-track excursion through the music hinterland of Venezuela, Colombia and Peru. "Africa Latina" tells about time to open the door and show the rest of the world, how Africa is one of the most significant influences on today's popular music throughout the Americas.
04. Perú Landó
05. Afro East
07. Africa Latina
08. Long Term
09. Venezuelan Rhapsody
Produced by Leo Blanco & Steve Shehan.
Recorded by Joe Marciano in November 2006 at Systems II Studios,
Brooklyn, NY and in January 2007 in Paris, France.