Susan Pascal’s Soul Sauce

October 30th, 2012

Another great night at Tulas as Earshot rolls on. n this performance, vibraphonist Susan Pascal celebrated the 1960’s work of mallet masher Cal Tjader (1925-1982). Pascal is joined by pianist Fred Hoadley and percussionist Tom Bergersen, from Seattle’s Afro-Cuban jazz band Sonando, and bassist Chuck Deardorf and drummer Mark Ivester, from Jovino Santos Neto’s Brazilian jazz band Quinteto.

The 2012 Earshot Jazz festival continues. Click on the schedule here 2012 Earshot Jazz Festival 

Swedish American drummer Callen “Cal” Radcliffe Tjader Jr. learned how to play the vibraphone while performing with pianist Dave Brubeck. His good vibes got him a job with pianist George Shearing. Later, Tjader sought out Cuban musicians to ply the warm waters of the late 1950s mambo craze. The title track of his 1964 album Soul Sauce, a cover of a Dizzy Gillespie song, climbed the radio charts and sold more than 100,000 copies.

Pascal began collecting music for this project in 2009, and the program has grown ever since. The mambo music in the band’s book and mondo talent on stage create an embarrassment of riches. “It’s tough to decide which tunes to use,” Pascal says. “There are so many great ones to choose from. It’s a balancing of mixing familiar hits with unknown gems. We start with the groundbreaking work of Mongo Santamaria and Dizzy Gillespie, then add collaborations of Cal Tjader and Clare Fischer with modern twists from Chick Corea and Don Grolnick.”

Pascal studied with Tom Collier, director of percussion studies at the University of Washington since 1980 and newly appointed chair of jazz studies. In addition to performances in Seattle clubs and concert stages, Pascal has toured Singapore multiple times. She appears on motion picture soundtracks for The Blind Side, The Wedding Planner and Office Space.
The audience may have a problem staying in their seats at Tula’s, especially after a few mint-laced Mojitos. Pascal says, “Expect everything from solo vibraphone cadenzas to languid cha-chas and up-tempo mambo jams.” – SG

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