Perhaps considered an unlikely historical music landmark in the evolution of Afro-Cuban Jazz, in late 1967 a recording session would take place in New York City organized by then trombonist Mark Weinstein entitled Cuban Roots that would mark the pulse and profoundly capture the essence of Afro-Cuban Jazz innovation as never done before. This recording remained obscure and only known as the “Green Album” among an underground base of musicians and hardcore music fans. Now, over 30 years later, Weinstein is commissioned by the San Francisco based label Cubop to record a second version of the latter recording this time entitled Cuban Roots Revisited.
As with the first rendition, “Cuban Roots Revisited” is described as Afro-Cuban sacred music presented instrumentally and influence by Jazz. Except for Mark who is now heard performing on flute, all of the musicians are California-based. The musical atmosphere is quite inventive as the instrument attempt to revive the secular spiritual voices inherent in Afro-Cuban religion. The 9 tracks feature a variety of rhythms ranging from Guaguanco, Conga, Rumba and Comparsa. Like the tipico call-n-respond Misa Negra choir of Santeria chant rituals, the trombones play in harmony percolating amid the powerful rhythm. Weinstein’s flute provides the lone voice knitting an illusive thread of melody that intertwines with harmonious passion.
Mark’s resiliency and virility is apparent throughout as if possessed by Changa, oricha of thunder and lightning. Nonetheless, he manages to illustrate a profound sense of creativity. “Cuban Roots Revisited” conveys a unanimous force of rhythm thereby producing exquisite spiritual enlightenment. Surely, an essential CD to own.”