I met Robin Jones for the first time in March 2003. Like many other musicians in to Latin I knew who he was and what he did however, quite how extensive the volume of his past work with major international recording artists was to say the least, impressive:
Ben Webster, Dexter Gordon, Stan Getz,Elton John,Blue Mink,Bee Gees,Moby,Pet Shop Boys,Al Jarreau,Matt Bianco,Basia,Phil Woods,Mongo Santamaria,Charlie Palmieri,Lalo Schifrin,Gilberto Gil,Arturo Sandoval,Sade and M People.
In the ‘60’s Robin was an established kit player working at The Blue Note in Paris with Budd Powell, Johnny Griffin and Chet Baker. Later with Barney Kessel at Ronnie’s, and later still he became a regular player with Don Rendle. It was, however, his work in Latin music that would make him, along with Barry Morgan (they worked together in the Edmundo Ros band), the men about town, the guys who knew something about the genre. It is this and his work with his own bands, The Sextet and King Salsa that has led to Robin being dubbed the
"Godfather of British Latin".
For this album Robin has again assembled his regular crew, augmenting the sextet with several guest musicians including Brazilian master percussionist Bosco De Olivera , Robin’s former student Snowboy,Trombonist Tim Smart, and my old mate the Hammond Maestro Paul Birchall.
Particularly impressive is the writing and arranging. Much credit must go to the prolific Nick Walker who has penned four of the seven tracks contained here.
It is a testimony to Robin’s expansivenes as a musician and band leader that he has remained open to change and experimentation, notably embracing Paul Birchal’s re-working of Steve Watermans Homage to Mr Davis, Miles Below into a dance track! It is this freshness and generosity that marks Robin, a man in his seventieth year, as someone who is constantly active in his pursuit of pastures new.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
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