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New from Charlie Sepúlveda and The Turnaround



“Charlie Sepúlveda is a trumpeter of power and nuance. On this new recording, Sepulveda takes on the challenge of preserving culture without being trapped by it. He can take a tried-and-true classic like ‘Besame Mucho,’ and instead of falling into the routine he completely modernizes it, stripping the tune of his sometime over-emphasized bolero rhythm and makes something completely new and communicative. Here paying tribute to his former boss, Eddie Palmieri, Sepúlveda brings his distinctive style to eight imaginative tracks with Palmieri delivering two solo tracks. This isn’t salsa and it isn’t jazz, and it’s not exactly a fusion of the two but an exciting and imaginative place between them.”


Charlie Sepúlveda is known as the trumpet player of his generation. He studied at the Escuela Libre de Música de Puerto Rico; also at City College of New York with Ron Carter and William Fielder.

In 1987 he was the musical director of his cousin, Eddie Palmieri, with who he collaborated in the nineties sessions and recorded “Sueño” (1989). He worked with the Talking Heads and Rei Momo and in the “Aventura Latina” of David Byrne (1989). He is the trumpeter of Hilton Ruiz in “Manhattan Mambo” (1992), “Heroes”(1993) and “Hands of Percussion” (1995). He also participated with Tito Puente in “Out of this World” (1990) and “Mambo of the Times” (1991); also with Golden Latin Jazz All Stars “In Session” (1993). Dizzy Gillespie, Steve Turre, Dave Valentín and Free leaded other sessions on file.

In 1991 he had a solo debut with “The New Arrival” as head of his group, under the name of Charlie Sepulveda & The Turnaround. It highlighted the tenor David Sánchez and Adam Cruz on drums. The pianist Danilo Pérez was one of the guests. Sepulveda pays tribute to three of his heroes: Rafael Cortijo, Kenny Dorham and Art Blakey. The achievement of “Algo Nuestro” (1992) became one of the essential albums of the nineties.

Starting from its roots (danza, bolero, plena), Sepulveda takes us into melodic paths with his innovation; always happy to do the best he can do, making his trumpet sing. In 1994 he recorded with Dizzy Gillespie and Wynton Marsalis on Telarc label, “To Diz with Love”. He also worked with the United Nation Orchestra conducted by Dizzy Gillespie and Macoy Tyner. Currently Charlie Sepulveda is the director of Jazz workshop as a facilitator in Trinidad and Tobago as part of Trinidad Pan Jazz Fest. He has eleven solo recordings, two Latin Grammy nominations and a Billboard Award nomination.

Partial Discography: 1997, Eddie Palmieri, La Verdad (Fania). 1989, David Byrne, Rei Momo (Lauka Bop), E. Palmieri, Sueño (Intuition), Tito Puente, Out of this World (Concord Picante). 1991, Puente, Mambo of the Times (Concord Picante), The Mambo Kings (Elektra). 1992, Hilton Ruiz, Manhattan Mambo (Telarc), Steve Turre, Sanctificed Shells (Antilles). 1993, Puente y los Golden Latin Jazz All-Stars, In Session (Tropijazz), Ruiz, Heroes (Telarc), Dave Valentin, Tropi Heat (GRP). 1994, Libre, Mejor que nunca (Milestone). 1996, Tropijazz All-Stars, Vols.1 &2 (Tropijazz). 1997, Varios, Nuyorican Soul (GRP).

Tracks: Variations on a Theme 1; Charlie’s Whole Tone Blues; Bomba pa Carmen; Mr. EP; Besame Mucho; Peer Magic; Si tu Sabes (featuring SieteNueve; Mr. Jazz; Variations on a Theme 2.

Personnel: Norberto Ortiz, tenor saxophone; Bienvenida Dinzey, piano; Gabriel Rodriguez, bass; Raul Maldonado, drums; Gadwin Vargas, congas; special guest, Eddie Palmieri.

Artist Website: http://charliesepulveda.com
HighNote Records: http://www.jazzspot.com

A graduate of Empire State College with a dual major in journalism and Latin American studies, Tomas Peña has spent years applying his knowledge and writing skills to the promotion of great musicians. A specialist in the crossroads between jazz and Latin music, Peña has written extensively on the subject.


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