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Bobby Ramirez: Pan Con Bistec

The publicity materials of Pan Con Bistec (Ritmo City) by composer, arranger, saxophonist and flutist Bobby Ramirez describe it as “an extraordinary fusion of world music with jazz influence.” That is quite a stretch. There is absolutely nothing astonishing about this Latin-jazz recording. Even so, there is nothing to lament or deride either. Bill Evans’ “Waltz for Debby” has ease of access and does not let the listener off the hook as it manages to engage both harmonic interest and melodic attraction through Ramirez’s progressively rhythmic flute fluttering. One also gets the convivial chance of listening to violinist Federico Britos Ruiz–a somewhat overlooked main ingredient in Charlie Haden’s Nocturne–under different circumstances. In the title cut Ruiz’s rhythmic verve, progression, tonic complexity, intonation and bristling technique are evident in that opening jam. “Bajo Blues”–with extended mainstreamed jazz passages–finds him in a bluesy-swinging locus, playing fluent Southern North American jazz. Venezuelan bassist Ramses Colon-a Cachao protege-comps with brawn and his thick marches solidify the production and lend it character. All three pianists have extensive cross-genre credits, and their cultural globalization comes into play, not only in their soloing but most notably in their lucid support.

Originally Published