Latin Jazz

This group is for people that love Latin Jazz and for Latin Jazz Groups to Network.

Location: Orlando, Florida
Members: 124
Latest Activity: Jul 14, 2011


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Comment by April Sims on September 6, 2009 at 1:03pm
Hello everyone. My name is April Sims of April Sims A and E Radio.
Comment by Darryl Taylor on August 5, 2009 at 9:32pm
I really like this CD, JOSE ROSA AND FRIENDS.Latin jazz is my favorite.
Comment by Romero Wyatt on July 31, 2009 at 1:59pm
I'm a percussionist with lot's of influences from African to Afro Cuban and Latin jazz and more check out Drummers of Coyoba CD itune's or et. check out

Comment by Myreille Bédard on May 27, 2009 at 8:19am
Hi everybody

I am an author and singer who has a french repertoire of latin jazz songs. Welocme in my space if you want to discover it.

Comment by John Sussewell on March 1, 2009 at 11:17am

This is an incredible thread! I’m blessed to be able to share in it.

Kindly allow my input, since I have a lot to share that most of us already know. This will not be an easy read among the less patient. For those with sentient responses, kindly know that what I write is only my perspective on things.

One of the most beautiful things about music, among any art form, is that its expression is not limited by another’s interpretation or appreciation. I have always believed that any art form is an outward expression of a person’s inner condition and views. Art is articulated in a medium of audio, visual, and written compositions. “Art” also can be attributed what our five senses cannot embrace.

Also consider that “art” embraces such practices as “the medical” sciences (where human lives are at stake), as well as personal relationships when a “soft answer can turn away anger.” It only takes being slow to speak and quick to listen to heal relationships among personalities. It takes God himself to heal a body. It takes patience to embrace what is beyond any of us.

So I ask: who is listening to each other these days when i-pods and cell phones seem to dictate our existence? I am listening without ever owning an i-pod. As to my cell phones (?): I keep it off when not required. There are other means provided to reach me among those whom I know and know me.

We have lost touch with each other in these subtleties. In this vein, kindly take the time to understand what I have both written here and now, as well as demonstrated by personal experience over the last 40 years. I knew the internet before it became the Internet, and provided for your listening more avenues than many are able to claim today. That sounds like bravado; yet, it is true from my involvements since in adult living.

As far as I’m concerned, I’ve never been satisfied with broadcast media in Atlanta, GA. I first came here in 1973 when drumming with Donny Hathaway at the OMNI. The venue imploded in 1998 to make way for another venue: Phillips Arena and the Georgia Dome. I performed in both of these venues since then – and so have many, both here and abroad.

Today, the Hot-Lantan community is too diverse for mainstream stations to bury creativity and listenership into corporate concerns and a programmed “playlists.” My desire is to get back to what the FCC requires: that each medium reflects the needs of the local community in both its format and demographic. Atlanta media has rarely done this: certainly not now with playlists that refuse to portray talented local artists being heard. It is a matter of compliance and enforcement. It is a matter far beyond the economics seeming to stifle creativity.

Yes, I know. You run a business that balances education and edification with the bottom line. For example, teachers seek to come up with entertaining ways to inspire learning among students. Yet once graduating, all that really happens is that no one really contributes anything of lasting value beyond survival and conforming to the status quo. The reason for this is that too many folks are constrained by their own fears. In fear, a person is forced to think within a “box,” rather than out of it. By definition, our artistic creativity is aborted when succumbing to this attitude.

Come on… think out of the box, as “employees” are encouraged to do. I know the Best, as we all should. None of us can do it alone. We must work together. The sum total of our effort is greater than our individual personalities. By definition, I believe this is ‘synergy’ in the simplest meaning of the term, let alone its concept.

Since first moving to Atlanta in 1984 out of New York City, I’ve often been inspired by what could be a lot more. Atlanta is a great city; it is only limited by people and cultures populating this metropolis not having the right attitude. So what else is new anywhere? Someone will likely say the same where they are at. Be encouraged.

Privilege is meant to empower you; not entitle you. Just spell my name right and quote it properly. Currency would be helpful also. If you have it to give, then give it to someone who most needs it. Give it to someone you seek to know by encouraging them; and him who responds to words spoken gently by you . In other words, pay forward and not backward.

What Jeff Majors did with Radio One is now gone. He worked hard to make Radio One a “smoother avenue” for the audience out of Baltimore, Maryland. I met this man in Baltimore, MD, in 1996, or thereabouts, when promoting the William Becton project on CGI Records. Then came Jeff’s harp. Unfortunately, he is no longer married to the woman that Radio One is known by – what happened to Jeff? Even more, what happened to Ms. Hughes? Superlatively, what happened to John & Candi (Staton) Sussewell? I know what happened and would appreciate it if those who don’t will consider that on a double carriage-way [thorough-fare] , there are two sides to any story.

These days, some women think they open a door into the future without understanding how they got there, or are Susstained along the way [pun intended]. The seed comes from the male, and The Seed came from Christ. There is no other and there is no argument on that Score. Mary’s seed came from The Father… our seed comes from the sentient male when acknowledging that Christ (The Seed) came from his Father, and not us.

You ask if this is cyclic reasoning. No, it is not. I am just sowing the thought as a reminder for inspection – introspection even.

Our society and the capacities fulfilling roles within it is topsy-turvy; it is inside-out, and upside-down. I have the courage to say it here and everywhere. I have been saying it for decades. I happen to like “smooth Jazz.” It does not inspire me musically speaking. It simply brings pleasure and relief to many who like to listen to it. It is targeted for those who don’t perform creatively. Among those who do play and rely upon this idiom/genre as an art-form – well forgive me: you are only seeking to make money at the chagrin of some and the ineptitude of others. I readily apologize when offending the sensibility of those who only like to listen to one genre of music. I’m serious – I should not have thought that, let alone write it, unless, perhaps, the craft and art form of smooth jazz should be expanded beyond this one style of music by the craftsman and musician.

I shift gears again.

I am not into polemics (I’m certainly not of Catholic worship or form of things). I am only about what is prophetic. This dictates any of us being alive to do ANYTHING within the Will of an intelligent and benevolent Creator! I believe by the Word, and not rituals. In that flow, I am Lawful.

Otherwise we couldn’t be here to even speak with each other. Catholicism to me is like the traditions of men making the word of God without effect. Had it not been for such religiosity, there would be no Protestants. History has shown this. When will Mankind learn? Oh, I forgot: we have personalities to deal with! Go figure, including mine.

The Bible says one thing, yet Catholics do another. The Bible says another thing, and then so called “universals” do another. I neither wax nor wane unless dynamics call for it – and that by the Gift and Grace many these days think is only restricted within a brick and mortar church, or among the masses in some congregation as if shopping for groceries. Or maybe it is even your work-place. Whatever way, we must listen before speaking, in spite of those who want to speak before listening. This is why I do not pastor any longer: endless hours of counseling with intrepid insistence on the part of the counselee to counsel the counselor. It is relatively easy to speak publicly when compared to one on one exchanges. My Calling deals with one on one; it does not deal from a platform unless I am an invited speaker.

Consider this too [since it has relevance to musical creativity]: all of a sudden the teacher becomes the student and visa versa. It is like that on stage in a musical performance when orchestration and coordination is paramount. I love the one on one more than I do the public display! Together there is a symphony of agreement rather than those attempting to master their instruments. Go figure.

Our music is universal; our worship is personal. Keep both in the proper frame of reference. Keep both in context. None of us with skin can (nor should) judge another. Our behavior (performance) alone testifies to Mankind’s imperfections. Are not our circumstances clearly seen?

I will not beg the question of why there is not recognition. I will offer a solution to the question asked over the history of Man’s existence. This is the only Scripture that I will quote in this web log – I must do this given present times and the Calling that still abides upon me and every Believer in the Word of Truth by God Himself - and not by private interpretations (opinions). Perhaps the King James Version says it best, given the hypocrisy among mankind since 1611 when this version was canonized. To not know His Story, destines everyone to repeat history. At least understand what is now seems archaic. The intent is timeless among timekeepers.

“From whence come wars and fightings among you? Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?” But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” [James 4:1-6]

After establishing a gospel record label and enjoying Grammy, Dove and Stellar nominations within that genre as the CEO, CFO, CIO, drummer, producer and husband to wife (and artist Candi Staton, for 20 years and for this label WE shared in), my efforts to break the so called “colorless barrier” were stalled by this very “corporate” programming from some nebulous office. You never know who this person with skin is. Do you? Oh yes you can: look around you and discern the signs of the times. They are not your enemy – or maybe they are when not acknowledging who motivates them to do what is being done. I sit in an office where women cackle and others chime in with the noise. I do my work with excellence; yet wonder how to resolve the askew, awry and awkward. Yet at the same time, I love my work and the purpose of it. I am not a secretary. I am a visionary. The difference here is that I am productive where I find myself. My prayer is that others would be as well.

One preacher/teacher (calling himself an Apostle) said it was only a matter of economics. I still think in 2009 that other motives by imperfect human hands are involved here: same works, but by other means – not Justifying the ends. Try to get a federally determined non-profit corporate entity today. The backlog will stifle you if not out-right discourage you. As for an “apostle,” I refuse to accept any these days taking on such a title as if entitled.

There are NO apostles these days by the very definition of the Word of God Himself. I say this in the context of definitions and application. If you are focused on the connotations of the word ‘apostle,’ then maybe you are one. By definition, I think not: there is nothing done anywhere on the planet that has not already been done by someone else. There are, however, pioneers. Beracah Records embodied pioneers at a time when the entire music industry was breaking out of the disco-era.

It is funny how in the most remote places on the planet, the news is being broadcast; but few are there bringing the Good News. There is a distinction between the gift and the title attributed to function. If you don’t believe this, then compare how a person is often stifled in a work-place when knowing more are at the table than those bringing food for consumption.

I was in South Africa and other countries on the continent well before apartheid and genocide was finished. So were probably many. I have the courage to admit it. I was born in America… yet my country is catching up with the founding fathers who failed to exercise what they wrote: so much for “conservatism in exile” Mr. Hannity. My God demonstrates what He Writes. We are all catching up to Him and not America, since he is no respecter of persons. So now we want to create another award; another honor? Read on…

The means by which the ministry and label (Beracah Ministries/Beracah Records – a federally determined 501(c)(3)) attained such success was because the product was there with proper marketing and sensitivity. The vision and mission speaks to motives. The accountability is there as well as responsibility. The results speak to success.

I’d be remiss if leaving out proper timing, and certainly the artistry of All involved in the process. Having Christ in my life, I regret that Candi is no longer a part of it. Yet that was over 10 years ago when she walked out of my life.

Please keep in mind that “gospel” music is a very small segment among RIAA statistics. Back in 1982 when I first entered this genre, my thoughts were that there are no real players unless for their church. It was all choir music without any creativity beyond the typical orchestrations and arrangements. We proved the major industry incorrect in their assessment. Yet we have our share of the greater picture and pie. I repeat “We,” and not “me.”

Even in spite of one particular Atlantan based individual programming Christian stations around the nation at that time, the consensus of principled courage persisted:

Hint # 1: 1990 with Burkhart & Abrams on Oliver Scott’s “Hold On” release; allegedly supporting Beracah Records through conventional channels. The team of Beracah fulfilled its mission in vision – i.e. to produce marketable music with a message beyond entertainment. Yet even then we were met with this “good ‘ole boy” mentality.

Brad Burkhart knows what he refused to do; when momentum speaks beyond his ability to embrace or even be accountable. However, it is not in my character to hold a grudge. My widely distributed article in the erstwhile publication (Bookstore Journal; Christian Booksellers Association) already attests to what was done.

As Christians, we are covered under the Blood of Christ and not our entrepreneurial efforts to succeed at the expense of another. We have fellowship with one another through Christ’s Life and NOT another. My problem is with many who claim Christianity without displaying the Fruit of being so.

I was offended by the statements of another Nashville, TN, executive when attempting to re-invent was has always been here. This was Billy Ray Hearn of Sparrow Records who came to me back in the early 90’s and said “you are so articulate”. What? Did you ever read what was Written, while attempting to complement me on what I wrote? Sound familiar with Obama?

He (and Brad) was just late in discerning this Principle [they were both oblivious when trying to figure their place in Life beyond what Appears and accustomed to]. I cannot, nor will not, question motives or heart-condition. The evidence speaks for itself. Opportunity toward commitment does not justify means reaching goals. Judge behavior certainly; and in the process discern the difference between what the mouth says and what the heart intends.

Mankind stands erect; we must be accountable for as many who have an ear to hear: most certainly ourselves in the mix. There is a lot of noise these days and less substance.

What I will say is that Oliver Scott is a former member of the original “Gap Band.” Those who know will remember that this is Funk City from the West Coast!

I Have Permission to reveal a track that Oliver’s artistry already demonstrates. I will not tell you how much frik and frak I had to deal with on the home front (within the staff that I assembled) to fly the master tapes to Houston, Texas, on my own. We used Federal Express. More importantly, Listen to the influences as well the confluence of various technologies (both analog and digital). We are more gifted and talented than what roles anyone can cast us [this is not jazz, but a synthesis of the common and simple message that our parents listened to toward consensus]. This is by Oliver Scott’s hands:
Oliver Scott (co-produced with Suss! on Beracah Records)
“Hold On;”
…a message beyond the traditions of men making the Word of God with none effect.

Personally from me (Suss!), my prayers are directed toward an effect in global economy. The “affections” deal with personalities when there should be an “effect” sowing potential into kinetic (released) reality. It only takes discernment to detect our current space and time. Is this a conundrum (riddle). I think not. Only our collective willingness will result in an answer. Only your willingness will result in balancing the equation of Life. Only your willingness will wind up proving yourself approved.

This is the pulse that was parented into me by my father and mother. This is why among all of the songs I appear and have made public, I have not lost my view and vista. I cannot do it alone. Build consensus upon proven principles, rather than present circumstances and fallibilities.

Through Beracah’s marketing (and the best promotion we certainly did at that time), we attained “Contemporary Hit Radio” status (CHR) around the USA with four-color print ads, MSA/MDA ads [metropolitan statistical & metropolitan demographic areas] and local visits in person by Oliver himself.

By his Pastor, tour support was denied (when Michael Williams refused the most basic and simple principle deliberating an airline ticket for Oliver). He chose to have Oliver fly back to Houston rather than already being near here. We would have covered the cost difference. But NO: the PASTOR has spoken: without having done so to fulfill a greater Plan. Either put up or shut up Michael; stop preaching with your degrees when others with greater wisdom have something to say with more efficiency.

I am an alumnus of Harvard University. Michael is an alumnus of Yale. The rivalry was founded well before most reading this can appreciate. It is too bad that Oliver got caught in the mix.

I agree with our British brothers to leave the frik and frak out!” Actually, my British brothers would say “Leave it out.” The frik and frak remains in America. Here in America, “democracy” is being tested as a system of things. I am neither into politics nor polemics…

I choose to diffuse arguments (and polemics, in a formal sense). I choose, rather than make a difference, between anyone WITH the privileges we’ve earned by education and experiences. Leave the pontifications and selfish personalities out. Pay attention to my native language: English. I choose to make it simple and most efficient in an elegant (simple) manner AND fashion, when understanding that American English is the most difficult language and culture to understand in the 21st Century.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
So we remember without regressing. I speak globally, but with emphasis toward Oliver Scott, John Sussewell, Candi Staton and a nascent record label born from a dining room table in Birmingham, Alabama.

Anyone from that era knows that CHR is not quite the same thing as “Adult Contemporary” (AC). CHR did not sell records then; now it would. AC did sell records then; now it won’t. Go figure. See the shift? Will you see the whims on a global scale now (?), rather than the local emotions felt within yourself? Figure out the riddle: conundrum while I sense our hope is for others to read between the lines. All anyone is achieving these days (daze) is equity.

Brad Burkhart (of Burkhart & Abrams) refused to acknowledge this until four months later back then. Any record executive knows that “market” potential for most music releases is attained within a month (or so) of a title’s release – and that by building an “expectation” for a commercial release or product. This is especially true when many dollars are spent well before a Title is released.

By then, it was too late for anyone to hide behind excuses. It didn’t matter how many awards, ceremonies and guest appearances came after achievement. What mattered at the time was that there was not a timely yield on investment when quality was a “given.”

I still think this is what drives “American” capitalism in a “democracy.” Democracy is an experiment: our lives and viability are NOT an experiment. We are not “test-tubes; we are “vessels” toward conveying the best from one generation into the next. Our gifts, talents and evidence is both fact and truth; our acceptance among mankind is often fickle.

So my “two-cents” is to persist with the vision in Our heart. Just create music and have a great business mind at the same time. Today there are more avenues to promote AND advertise your music that what I experienced then. I still play/perform, but don’t produce: simply because those with recording studios are convoluted with their role in the process; and others are trying to establish their own “labels” without the artist roster beyond themselves or the projects/copyrights they control.

WCLK in Atlanta is a “college station.” The last time I checked, their wattage is only 5K AM (amplitude modulated @ 5,000 watts). Their footprint is scant outside of I-285. Frequency modulated radio stations (FM) are afforded a larger share of the bandwidth and more widely heard and with greater fidelity.

Hint # 2: There is news how unseen and lobbied forces have eaten up available bandwidths in advance of anyone knowing it. Kindly read trade magazines specific to an industry, rather than peruse the internet for the latest and greatest. The best example is that the visible spectrum is negligible when compared to the entirety of wavelengths and frequencies. This means that stations like WCLK will have to come out their umbrella as a college station and become a commercial station. Clark-Atlanta is an educational institution that receives federal subsidies. By definition, and licensed, the laws have to be changed before advances can be made. Then the question remains if Listeners will support the investment made in the private sector.

So, with all respect: STOP complaining as if you are not willing to write a Congressman, the FCC, or come up with the money and business plan yourself toward an alternative. This liberty and freedom is what undergirds “America.” It is called entrepreneurship.

Otherwise, realize that democracy depends upon the voice of everyone participating in the process. Are you in?

Leave the rest up to those equipped to assist if you are not able to do it yourself. I’ve done this and have been there. It was a great experience. Without the right team, it will not be repeated from a dining room table with both vision and mission in a person’s heart. It, however, can be done: with the right team.

Fortunately, I am in a different field now with the same Seed.

Hint # 3: I do not listen to radio for my inspiration. I listen to those from whom I’ve purchased music or the music upon which I’ve had the privilege to participate in: in the 21st Century. I certainly wish WCLK had a wider “footprint” in the Atlanta area. But that has to do with their charter and not with what some people desire. Take it up with the FCC while acknowledging our own limited aural and visible spectrum.

We are all competing for the same space now. No entity can occupy the same place in space and time. This is a fundamental law of proven physics.

Wow!? [not really]. We all have bigger visions and the means toward a mission to get there. It only takes cooperation among Americans willing to sow in the effort.

No person’s argument will ever override what has been proven to me by experience.

My love and respect to All,


John M. Sussewell

P.S. Hint # 4: There is more than enough courage to make up for the seeming lack of money. My part in Eddie Palmieri’s “Mare Nostrum” is nothing more than to say that I never met the man; I never played on any of his musical releases. I only do what I am inspired to do for the benefit of all. The metaphor herein with myself behind the kit as an overdub speaks to anyone’s ability when grasping the flow of music: its freedom and liberty of personal expression without offending those who listen. Enjoy the journey when recognizing that there is more than enough to make up for the lack of anything. The currency is ourselves and not merely the tools we bring to a public forum or personal performance on any instrument. Even if you do not believe in a god, I bless each and everyone in the person and Name I know from God Himself. Jehovah the Father with Christ Jesus His Son (and I am NOT a Jehovah’s Witness as this Organization has chosen to be known by). I am a servant in the spirit of what Christians should be known by. At least, I am a drummer’s drummer exercising patience in the process while having a personal relationship with the One still bestowing Gifts.
Comment by exe*Cute* on November 25, 2008 at 6:31pm
Irene's Great Voice --->
... N another Canadian One --->
Comment by Norvell A. Molex Jr. on October 5, 2008 at 4:28pm
I would like to do a show on "The Jazz Suite" dedicated to Latin Jazz if anyone can help with this pleas contact me at

Norvell Molex Jr.
Comment by Jose Pepe Vera on September 29, 2008 at 6:48pm
Im new in here too.thanks to all whom love this great music
Comment by Elaine Hernandez on September 11, 2008 at 6:34pm
Hello! I am new to the latinjazznetwork and I will like for all of you in the latin jazz community to came and visit my site under Elaine Hernandez. Thank you!
Comment by Celia Mur´s Page on August 11, 2008 at 9:55am
hello , i´m preparing my new cd realise " SIMPATIA" for the next November in Spain,. and hopefully in Nyc and europe next year,
I sing my father originals in spanish , portuguese and english, is such a modern jazz with spanish and bit flamenco touch.
you can listen a couple of tracks in peace!!

Me gustaria contactar con agencias de latinoamerica y Miami. saludos!!

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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.

I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.

My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."

Let's be audacious, my friends!

Buster Williams


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