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Jazz Caliente: Celebrating the generations of Latin jazz

Trumpeter Pete Rodriguez, son of salsero Pete "El Conde" Rodriguez
©Hannah Neal
courtesy of the artist
Trumpeter Pete Rodriguez, son of salsero Pete "El Conde" Rodriguez

Musical genius seems like it could be a genetic trait. It's so often passed down through successive generations. That's certainly true in Latin jazz, and we'll hear from members of musical families this week on Saturday's Jazz Caliente.

Starting the show is the Cuban super group Irakere, led by pianist Chucho Valdes. His father was Bebo Valdes, one of the legendary pianists of Cuban jazz. Chucho continues the family tradition; he's the father of two pianists, Chuchito and Leyanis, and his youngest son Jesse is a drummer. 

Also, listen for trumpeter, vocalist and jazz educator Pete Rodriguez. In 2015, he released his wonderful album "El Conde Negro," in part a tribute to his father, beloved salsa singer Pete "El Conde" Rodriguez.   

Of course we must include the darlings of the Bay Area, the E family. Bandleader and percussionist Pete Escovedo's sons Peter Michael and Juan often join him for tours, as does his famous daughter Sheila E. We'll hear something from their father and daughter recordings of the 1970s for our Latin soul selection this week.  

Arturo O'Farrill's Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra is on Saturday's playlist. As the son of one of the most prolific Latin jazz composers and bandleaders, Chico O'Farrill, Arturo has done his part to keep the music alive in so many ways, including passing the torch to his sons Zack (drums) and Adam (trumpet).  

It's all about family this week on Saturday Jazz Caliente!

Jazz Caliente airs Saturdays at 5:00 p.m.  The show is hosted by Robin Lloyd and produced by KNKX Public Radio.

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