Lovers of Latin jazz flocked to the Saville Theater for a sold-out performance by the Bobby Matos Latin Jazz Ensemble. Most of the members of this red-hot sextet hail from New York City, and there wasn’t a weak link. Bronx-born Matos is a master of the timbales. Pianist Theo Saunders is comfortable in any jazz setting, and his solos were marvels of dexterity and invention. Pablo Calogero on reeds and flute is expert in dance grooves and "taking it out." Bassist John B. Williams was rock solid throughout; his many years in music were evident in his protean bass lines. Daniel Weinstein doubled on trombone and violin and played expertly.
Sharing the percussive frontline with Matos was Robertito Melendez, whose congas provided the heartbeat of the ensemble. Leader Matos is the epitome of cool economy, achieving maximum sound with minimal exertion. They performed "Latinized" versions of "Monk's Mood" and Herbie Hancock's "Maiden Voyage." This was music you could dance to that wouldn't rot your brain.
The concert finale, "Bomba de Corazon," featured Matos and Melendez in a percussive shoot-out that had everyone dancing — if only in their head.
- Concert: Bobby Matos Latin Jazz Ensemble
- Date: June 29
- Venue: Saville Theater, San Diego City College
- Seats: general admission