PONCHO SANCHEZ, percussionist, has a way with imaginative rhythms that made him one of the most influential conga players in Afro-Cuban jazz.
Sanchez moved to Los Angeles from Laredo, Texas, where he was influenced by the music in his Chicano neighborhood and he practiced congas to Cal Tjader, Machito, and Tito Puente records, and was influenced by the Jazz Crusaders. He has been featured on albums by the Jazz Crusaders, Eddie Harris, Freddie Hubbard, Tito Puente, Mongo Santamaria, Dianne Reeves, Joey DeFrancesco and Terence Blanchard.
Poncho was part of Cal Tjader’s band from 1975 until 1982. That same year, he signed with Concord for the release of Sonando!, an album that marked the beginning of a prolific musical partnership that spans 30 years. Sanchez’s efforts paid off after more than two decades in music when his album, Latin Soul, received a Grammy award as Best Latin Album.
LA VOZ DE TRES: Chilean vocalist Natalia Bernal, keyboardist Mike Eckroth and seven-string guitarist Jason Ennis blend the infectious rhythms and nuanced songwriting traditions of Latin America, original compositions and picks from the Great American Songbook into a surprising improvisational texture. Since the 2010 release their self-titled CD La Voz De Tres, the band has appeared at some of the top jazz venues on both the east and west coasts, including Zinc Bar and Smoke (NYC), Ryles Jazz Club (Boston), The Nash (Phoenix) and the Kuumbwa Jazz Center (Santa Cruz CA).
The CD received extensive national airplay, including being played on Jim Wilke’s nationally syndicated Jazz After Hours on PRI. The group has also appeared live on air on several major NPR affiliates. La Voz De Tres was also invited by the municipal government of Iquique, Chile to conduct a week of workshops and performances in April of 2011.