Pete_sheila_escovedo-solo_two_span3
January/February 1998

Pete Escovedo/Sheila Escovedo
Solo Two/Happy Together
Fantasy Records

This reissue comprises two 1970s releases by the father-daughter team of Pete and Sheila Escovedo, playing timbales and congas respectively. The 14 cuts include several Brazilian numbers, "Bittersweet," and Milton Nascimento's "Veracruz" and "Bridges," with Pete singing the poetic lyrics. The Escovedos play the Brazilian rhythms with total mastery. Drummer/producer Billy Cobham's imprimatur is all over this release; his energetic, full-bodied rock drumming is heard on seven cuts, and he composed four tunes and arranged several others. The extended rumba, "Azteca Mozambique," opens with chanting by Pete, Sheila and percussionist Bill Summers. Pete plays congas and Sheila takes over on timbales on this number. On "Solo Two," Tom Harrell's trumpet garners as much attention as the superb percussion. Harrell is on four cuts, along with trombonists Al Bent and Julian Priester. "Cueros" is a live number featuring just the rhythm section. The crowd goes nuts. Some of this is dated, but overall the tunes sound fresh, the arrangements sharp, and the rhythms, in particular, exciting.

Originally published in January/February 1998
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