“ULTIMATE DUETS” by Jazz Icon ARTURO SANDOVAL
A great record from a great artist. We’ve been playing Ten-time Grammy winner Arturo Sandoval’s “Ultimate Duets” since May. This was Sandoval’s first release in five years and the continuation of a distinguished four-decade catalogue of over 30 groundbreaking titles. The album finds artists from the worlds of pop, jazz, classical and Latin music coming together for the Cuban maestro’s first duets release. At the outset of recording, Arturo simply asked each participant to suggest a favorite song they would like to reimagine and the results are as wide-ranging and illustrious as the list of collaborators.
Stevie Wonder chose to record “People” (which he and Sandoval first performed at a Grammy tribute to Barbara Streisand), whereas Prince Royce turned the tables and decided to record Stevie Wonder’s “Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thing” in a contemporary Bachata style. Many other magic moments materialized as the project grew, such as Alejandro Sanz (who appears on his own duet of “Corazon Partio”) brilliantly suggesting the addition of guitar legend Vicente Amigo to a flamenco infused version of Placido Domingo’s classic “Granada”. Participating in the album inspired Pharrell Williams to write the new, personal and specifically titled “Arturo Sandoval” with an invitation also extended to Ariana Grande.
At Arturo’s own request to his longtime friend Al Jarreau to revisit the famed hit “After All,” the fellow multiple-Grammy winner decided to write a new spoken word introduction. The addition of “The Pyramids, the China Wall… I’ll still be here After All… Mountains may crumble and stars may fall… I’ll still be here After All.” became even more emotional and timeless as it became Jarreau’s final recording, with the vocalist sadly passing away soon after the song’s completion. Similarly, Sandoval could not envision completing a full duets album without playing alongside the distinctive voice of his beloved friend and Cuban music icon Celia Cruz. The album is rounded out with additional duets with the powerful voice of Josh Groban, revered Dominican maestro Juan Luis Guerra, and Spain’s dynamic pop vocalist David Bisbal (see track listing below).
Dr. Sandoval is on the road. See his full tour schedule here.