I've said it before: it's a rare gift to have a job where one of the duties is listening to new jazz CDs that show up in the mail, then playing them on the radio for listeners. While many new releases don't make the cut, there's a lot of great music being produced these days. But then there are days like last Tuesday. That was the day I first gave a spin to trumpeter Etienne Charles' new CD, San Jose Suite. WOW!!!!!
I know there are still four months left in 2016, but I can't imagine there will be a CD released this year that will impress me as much as this one. On it, Charles pays tribute to, and draws inspiration from, three cities sharing the same name: San Jose, California, San Jose, Costa Rica, and his hometown of St. Joseph (formerly San Jose) Trinidad. The influences of these places and more shine through the twelve tracks. I just love this CD!