Happy birthday, Arturo Sandoval!

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Happy birthday to one of my very favorite trumpeters, Arturo Sandoval (born in 1949)! 

His birthday falls on a very important election day in the U.S., the country where Sandoval has been a naturalized citizen for twenty years. He defected from Cuba in 1990. Learn about Sandoval’s flight to freedom.

Here are three of my favorite pieces featuring the trumpet legend:

“Funky Cha Cha” – A blistering song with extra hot sauce from Michael Brecker

“Angelfire” – This cut from the Rippingtons’ Black Diamond release lets Arturo let loose a bit at the end. You can always count on the man to deliver. And it’s a good Russ Freeman composition and production, easily one of the best “cool fire” tracks in my library.

Leonid and Friends is a collective of Russian musicians who have been doing excellent covers of songs by the band Chicago. One of their latest is “Street Player” which features Arturo maybe sitting in his house, sitting down and still blowing out an incredible solo. He even hits an impossibly high note that I don’t think I’ve ever heard a trumpeter do before.

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