Desert Island Jazz
Poncho Sanchez (2012)

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(Photo by Steve Hinkley)

Poncho Sanchez was born in Laredo, Texas, the youngest of eleven children, and grew up in a musically rich neighborhood in Norwalk, California. From an early age he was exposed to all kinds of music—Afro-Cuban, Bebop, R&B, Rock, Funk.

After starting out on guitar, Poncho taught himself flute, drums and timbales before settling on congas. In 1975, his idol, Cal Tjader, invited him to sit in with the band, and Poncho got the job, playing with Cal until Cal's death in 1982.

Before Cal's death, he mentioned to Carl Jefferson, founder of Concord Records, that they should sign and record Poncho. Carl did, and since then Poncho has gone on to produce and record two dozen albums for Concord. He's garnered a Grammy for his work, and in November 2012 was given a Lifetime Achievement Award by The Latin Recording Academy®.
Pick Artist Album Song Label
# 1 Cal Tjader The Grace Cathedral Concert I Showed Them Fantasy
# 2 Mongo Santamaria Mongo Introduces La Lupe Quiet Stroll Riverside
# 3 Art Blakey Hold On, I'm Coming Slowly, But Surely Limelight
# 4 Cal Tjader Monterey Concerts Lover, Come Back to Me Prestige
# 5 Gloria Lynne I Can't Give You Anything but Love I Wish You Love Collectables
# 6 Gene Ammons Greatest Hits, Vol. 1, The Sixties Canadian Sunset Prestige
# 7 John Coltrane Coltrane Out of This World Impulse
Book Peter Guralnick, "Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke"
Luxury Item "A Marriott hotel"
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