Ron Francis Blake gets a weigh in on “Assimilation,” from WTJU Jazz! Rogers Says; Ron Francis Blake – Assimilation (Self-produced): Having played in support of Poncho Sanchez, Green Day, Ziggy Marley, and Ben Harper among others, Ron Francis Blake (trumpet, flugelhorn) has stepped out as a leader and dedicated his first release to his father who supported his love of many styles and encouraged him to follow his heart. Blake wrote or co-wrote five of the seven songs on the disc and describes his music as “inspired by Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue along with the latin rhythms and sound of Cal Tjader”. The result is an engaging and fresh delight. Participating musicians include Ron Hardt (tenor sax, flute, bass clarinet); Francisco Torres (trombone); Andy Langham and Joe Rotondi (piano); Rene Camacho and Dante Pascuzzo (bass); Nick Mancini (vibes); Jimmy Branly (drums); Joey De Leon (timbales, percussion); Steve Giraldo (vocals); special guests Poncho Sanchez (congas, quuada); Seamus Blake and Walt Weiskopf (tenor sax); Andy Abad (guitar) and Adonis Puentes (vocal); and a special brass ensemble featuring Wayne Bergeron and Javier Gonzales (flugelhorn); Lisa McCormick and Tawnee Lillo (French horns); Andy Martin (trombone) and Francisco Torres (bass trombone) on three songs. A fresh and engaging sound. “
Thank you to KZSU Stanford for the wonderful nod on Ron Francis Blake‘s album “Assimilation.” McCarter says; “Assimilation is a perfect title: this is modern Latin jazz beautifully played. There are nods to history but the music is fresh and vibrant in its own right. There are many guest artists and they come to contribute, not to stand out. All originals.”
Ron Francis Blake scores a 4.98/5 from Improvijazzation Nation. Zzaj says “Ron Francis Blake – ASSIMILATION: What an absolutely wonderful jazz set to wake up to… Ron’s trumpet work on this splendid seven-song collection will rock your morning – and your WORLD, folks! Tunes like the rousing opener, “La LLave (Zambiando)” are chock-full of the energy of life that makes living worthwhile. Five of the tracks are originals by Ron, and I’ve no doubt your ears will agree with mine – “Night Dream” will float your mind away (easily) into visions of wonderful things to come… the keyword for this tune is (without a doubt) “inspiring”! If you’re not 100% convinced yet, I want you to listen to my pick for personal favorite – “Northern Lights” (another original by Ron) has some absolutely haunting moments… the main attraction for my ears on this composition, besides Ron’s svelte horn of course, is the fine keyboard playing. I give Ron and crew a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.98 for this release.”
Honored to have DJ Jose Rizo feature my album , Assimilation , on his long running show Jazz on the Latin Side!