the roots of Jesse Cook there is much to discover. Born in Paris Jesse
soon developed a strong affinity for the Flamenco music of the
gypsies. After his parents separated, Cook accompanied his mother and
sister to Canada, his mother's birthplace. While
continued his studies in classical and jazz guitar at some of North
America's most prestigious music schools, he stayed in contact with
the music of his childhood.
In fifteen years he released seven
studio albums. After the debut album Tempest (1995), followed
Gravity (1996), Vertigo (1998), Free Fall (2000)
and Nomad (2003) on Narada. In 2004 he published the live-album
Montréal and in 2007 Frontiers, both on EMI. Now he is
back with his album The Rumba Foundation.
The album was recorded in two parts, in
Toronto Jesse was supported by Rosendo (Chendy) Leon JR. (Drums and
Percussion), Chris Church (all Violins, black Violin), Drew Birston
(Double Bass), Dennis Mohammed (Bass), Rosendo (Chendy) Leon SR.
(Bongos), Juan De Sedas (Accordion), Kevin Fox (Cello), Jonathan
Tortolano (Cello), William Arivalo (Caja and Guacharaca), Jeremy
Fisher (Vocals), in Bogota by the group Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto.
“I flew down to Colombia and worked
with a group called Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto. They won a Latin
Grammy back in 2007. They play traditional music known as Vallenato
and they make all their own instruments by hand including gaitos
flutes. I learned these flutes are always played in pairs and in only
one key. They are doing it old school,” comments Jesse Cook.
Bogota By Bus
is a fantastic journey into the vibrant music world of South America.
Jesse involves the impressions of the long bus trip and Los Gaiteros
add the typical flavor of the country. Santa Marta is a
festival of infectious Latin music melting Cook's guitar virtuosity
with the local color fiction of Los Gaiteros. 'I don't think it's ever
been done before," says Cook. "The sound is just so beautiful and so
intoxicating to me. But, blending these styles also speaks to their
With the romantic Tuesday's Child
Jesse injects an acoustic guitar tune with an emotional impact. On
Manolo's Lament Jesse returns to the South American sound,
which I personally love since the time of Simon and Garfunkel and
their world hits Cecilia and El Condor Pasa. No wonder
that Jesse recorded his own rendition of Cecilia, sparkling
every note of this magnificent song.
Framed by two
improvisations Jesse shines on La Rumba D'el Jefe. An amalgam
of rumba flamenco with Cuban son music featuring Chris Church on
violin. Gaita is the Spanish name for kuisi, a Native American
fipple (or duct) flute made from a hollowed cactus stem, with a
beeswax and charcoal powder mixture for the head, with a thin quill
made from the feather of a large bird for the mouthpiece. The rhythm
enhanced tune has the essence of the famous Lambada.
The contemplative Rain Day gives
time for recreation and a retrospective in one's own live. When you
approach Bombay by airplane, you smell the dirty air before the
airplane is landed. Nevertheless in spite of dirt and poverty Bombay
is full of attraction and verve. Bombay Diner mirrors the
pulsing city life of Bombay.
Afternoon at Satie's has its
surreal element. While rhythm and guitar play are Flamenco oriented,
the piano play stays in reverb and builds no relationship to the
melody. Homebound presents a haunting duet between Jesse's
acoustic guitar and
Chris Church's violin. A melancholic
song creating the perfect ambience for two lovers.
Jesse Cook's album is crisply performed
guitar music back with a mix of world influence by Los Gaiteros with
waves of percussion and emotion. A precious perl of world music of a
real guitar master.
Buy the album in all stores
Title: The Rumba Foundation
Artist: Jesse Cook
Genre: General Pop
Label: E1 Music
01 Bogota By Bus [3:06]
02 Santa Marta [3:49]
03 Tuesday's Child [4:00]
04 Manolo's Lament [3:31]
05 Improv 1 [0:27]
06 La Rumba D'el Jefe [3:37]
07 Improv 2 [0:16]
08 Gaita [4:45]
09 Rain Day [3:28]
10 Bombay Diner [4:20]
11 Afternoon at Satie's [3:17]
12 Cecilia (Featuring Jeremy Fisher) [3:46]
13 Homebound [4:44]