For his newest release, Soul Tren Latino, SA mainstay and Grammy winner Henry Brun takes to the streets, translating some of his favorite soul and pop classics into the language of Latin Jazz.
With the Latin Playerz, Brun reimagines the music of Marvin Gaye, The Miracles, and Ashford & Simpson. Like his playing style on the timbales, claves and assorted percussion, Brun has a knack for blending styles, mixing chicano, funk, R&B and Latin music in a signaturely Brun style.
On Soul Tren, layers of rhythmic entertainment create a base for the Playerz to stretch out over, treating the pop charts on the album as jazz heads, returning to a song's hook for structure, then soloing off in traditional jazz style. Sure in their playing and repetoire choices, it's Latin music from a dude who's dedicated his life to Latin music. Or as Brun calls it, "Brown Soul," a vivacious blend of American soul and Latin instruments and attitude.
Soul Tren's finest moments lie in the Cruise Suite, four medleys that capture Brun's vision of SA's North, South, East and West Sides. Of these, the "Westside Cruise" stands out as the most powerful. Merging War "Low Rider" and "Cisco Kid," the Playerz stay faithful to the rock-funk of the former, then pull out the solo-stops for 1972's "Cisco Kid."
This Tuesday, April 8th, you can catch Brun and the Latin Playerz at Soul Tren Latino's release party at 5:30pm at the Hard Rock Cafe. Soul Tren Latino is available for streaming and purchase at the Latin Playerz website.