Recorded in 1977, these consistently stimulating, previously unreleased live performances are further evidence of why for a quarter-century Cal Tjader (1925-1982) was at the head of the Latin-jazz class. The vibist's feel for various percolating and alluring rhythms, an effectively economical solo style, leadership of a series of exceptional bands (a number of whose sidemen went on to become important leaders in their own right--e.g., Poncho Sanchez, Tjader's conga drummer here), and many hit albums made for impressive credentials. The 1977 Tjader group offers an impelling mix of jazz, Latin and, thanks to Bob Redfield's strong presence on guitar, coolly assertive rock. (Carlos Santana has acknowledged Tjader's influence, and fans of that guitar hero will surely find much common ground with the music herein.) These proceedings are also a reunion between Tjader and the gifted keyboardist-composer-arranger Clare Fischer, who'd made vital contributions to Tjader's 1963-64 band and continues to do so throughout this welcome addition to the Tjader discography.
with Clare Fischer, Bob Redfield, Rob Fisher, Pete Riso, Poncho Sanchez