With this, his 8th overall album and Concord Picante debut, Sánchez continues to fuse his fierce, straight ahead jazz sound with African, Afro-Cuban and Caribbean influences. The 8-song album also features a new direction for Sánchez as he debuts a piano-less quartet on all but three of the eight songs and the inclusion of guitar. For the choice of guitarist David recruited Lage Lund, the winner of the Thelonious Monk Guitar Competition in 2005.
Explaining Cultural Survival’s intriguing title, Puerto Rican born Sánchez says, “It’s generally about the human condition. It started one day when I was just checking out the radio to find out what’s going on in the world. I love listening to NPR and especially “All Things Considered.” But I’m often left wondering, ‘where is the world going?’ You realize you’re surrounded by a younger generation that seems a little unconscious, living in their own space, their own reality, and not being very conscientious about the world around them.”
On “The Forgotten Ones,” Sánchez was inspired to pay tribute to all those in turmoil and hardship from so many places around the world, from New Orleans to Haiti. While the deep, moody and urgent track, “Adoración” is “a little tribute to a person who is very important in my musical development and who I always have to acknowledge — Eddie Palmieri,” said Sánchez.
The mammoth piece “La Leyenda del Cañaveral” is set to a poem written by David's sister, Margarita. The poem refers to the travels of African people who worked on sugar cane plantations throughout Africa and the Caribbean, and Sanchez describes the song as ‘a journey’ set to the rich history and anecdotes of these people. In addition to the seven original compositions, Sánchez includes a cover of “Monk’s Mood,” simply because, as Sánchez puts it, “it has always been one of my favorite pieces.”
David Sánchez has been nominated for 4 Grammy® Awards, and his last album, Coral, won the Latin Grammy for Best Instrumental Album in 2005.