Artist: Bill O’Connell
Label: Savant Records, Inc.
Website: http://www.billoconnell.netBrimming with a potpourri of Latin flavors, Wind of the Hudson from Bill O’Connell and the Afro Caribbean Ensemble is a light-heart mixture that is placating on the ears. From the swirling saxophone toots to the fluid whips of the percussive beats, each track is finely groomed and skillfully constructed.
“Got Cha” is a cheerful arrangement, brandishing a flotilla of feathery horns and bubbly beats that turn sultry and heated as they form blazing streaks across “Transition.” Indulging in a playful exchange between the horns and conga thrusts rippling along “C Jam Blues,” the nimble movements of O’Connell’s piano keys inject percolating waves that enhance the jovial mood. Infusing a dash of bluesy jazz, the leisurely amble of the horns billowing softly along “Gospel 6” produce a smooth glide across the melodic progressions, which switch to a series of intermittent bursts across “Jerry’s Blues.”
Lyrically phrased, the tracks make for a comfy balm on the ears. Horns bow out in bursts and recline intermittently as the rhythmic beats support the diverse temperaments. As a member of a small fraternity of non-Latinos who have made significant contributions to the Latin jazz movement, Bill O’Connell’s potpourri of Latin flavors is welcoming to the ears.
Bill O’Connell Pianist/Composer/Arranger
Andrea Brachfeld – flute and alto flute
Craig Handy – alto sax and soprano sax
Ralph Bowen – tenor sax
Gary Smulyan – baritone sax
Alex Sipiagin – trumpet, flugelhorn
Conrad Herwig – trombone
Lincoln Goines – electric bass
Robby Ameen – drums
Roman Diaz – congas