“The Happiest Music Ever Created” – Guest Post by Benjamin Hall

I am firm believer that Latin jazz is among the happiest music ever created. If I do not get enough sleep or wake up on the wrong side of the bed I frequently pop in a CD of Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, or Arturo Sandoval to get my blood pumping, feet moving and face smiling. Once the rhythm hits you resistance is futile… The Greater Lansing area will have an opportunity for revitalization and invigoration on Friday, Nov. 14 when Arturo Sandoval takes the stage at The Wharton Center.


What does Arturo Sandoval have in common with The Beatles, Adelle and Linda Ronstadt? He has been the recipient of 10 Grammy awards. What sets him apart is the fact that he has composed over 200 pieces of music of varying styles, including television and movie scores and jazz, classical, rock and traditional Cuban.  Arturo is also one of the most-gifted performers alive today and can be heard, on over 45 albums playing trumpet/flugelhorn with everyone from Woody Herman to Alicia Keys, Rod Stewart to Tony Bennett. His playing can not only be heard, but also felt in his effortless, stimulating, syncopated and soaring improvisations.

Arturo’s musical life was influenced greatly by his close personal relationship with one of the most important figures in jazz, Dizzy Gillespie. Arturo was born physically and musically in the small village of Artemisa in Cuba. He started playing trumpet at age 12 and soon his classical roots began spread to jazz. In 1977, Dizzy was docked in Havanna on a Caribbean tour with Stan Getz.  Arturo resolved to head to the docks and meet his idol, jazz master Dizzy Gillespie. Since the 1940’s Dizzy had been a huge proponent of Afro-Cuban music, and began adopting its rhythms and melodies into his own compositions. When one of America’s finest jazz musicians met one of Cuba’s-finest the genre was forever changed. Dizzy gained a protégé and Arturo gained a “spiritual father”. To hear excerpts from Arturo’s 2012 tribute To Dizzy Gillespie ,“Dear Diz (Everyday I Think of You), come to The Wharton Center on 11/14. I am sure Mr. Sandoval will throw in a little Latin jazz in as well.

If you’re interested in buying tickets to see this amazing performance, you can call us at 1-800-WHARTON, visit out box office, or check out the show page here!

Students don’t forget your specially discounted $15 student tickets! Click on the link on the right hand side of the show page to order!

Benjamin Hall is the Coordinator for the Summer Solstice Jazz Festival here in East Lansing.

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Posted in At Wharton Center, Events, Guest Blog, Performing Arts

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