Afro-Latin Jazz Show Rocks Regattabar

It may seem odd to say that a jazz show of any style rocked, but that’s exactly what Alex Alvear and Mango Blue did at Regattabar on Friday evening.

Alex Alvear

Alex Alvear

There were many people dancing at the back of the room, so obviously many felt the same as I did. Most of us who remained seated contributed by doing some chair dancing.

Latin jazz including its subset Afro-Latin jazz is probably my favorite jazz style (although ask me tomorrow and I might say traditional jazz), so I was excited to be in the audience for this show.

Mango Blue

Mango Blue

The band included Alex Alvear on bass and vocals; Manolo Mairena on vocals and percussion; Felipe Salles on tenor sax; Rebecca Cline on keyboard; Marcos J. Lopez on congas; David Rivera on drums and vocals; Jared Sims on alto sax; Yuriana Sobrino on timbal, bongos, and vocals (and let’s not forget the cowbell); and special guest Gonzalo Grau on percussion, synthesizer (I think) and vocals.

Alex Alvear

Alex Alvear

Manolo Mairena

Manolo Mairena

Felipe Salles

Felipe Salles

Rebecca Cline

Rebecca Cline

Marcos J. Lopez

Marcos J. Lopez

David Rivera

David Rivera

Jared Sims

Jared Sims

Yuriana Sobrino

Yuriana Sobrino

Gonzalo Grau

Gonzalo Grau

This band is clearly beloved in the Boston area at least because many people appeared to know their music. Everyone was happy that Alex chose to spend his birthday with us, and he was surprised with a cake (and those joke candles that don’t remain extinguished when you blow them out)!

Alex Alvear

Alex Alvear

They performed songs in many different styles, including a Cuban jazz style called changüi. I had never heard of that and need to do some research!

Mango Blue

Mango Blue

The range of instruments interested me, although as I think more about it they are not unusual for a Latin jazz ensemble. There was lots of percussion (five members), two woodwinds, one keyboard, and bass. And yes, there was cowbell!

Yuliana on Cowbell

Yuriana on Cowbell

I thoroughly enjoyed this show; the beat was infectious, the smiles on their faces were a joy to behold, and the music was terrific. I don’t know how much they tour, but I recommend seeing this band if you enjoy Latin jazz or if you want to learn to like it.

Ticket courtesy of Regattabar; all opinions are my own.

About suze72

I've loved the arts all my life... I go to a lot of concerts, take lots of photos and want to share them. Every once in a while I do something other than a concert, too. The Boston area is full of opportunities to indulge my passion - I'd like to help make it yours too!

Posted on March 23, 2015, in concert reviews, music, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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