Sergio Mendes, Eddie Palmieri, Poncho Sanchez @ Hollywood Bowl 7/9/09
Photo by Mick O Says So on flickr.
For the second time in two weeks, the Hollywood Bowl experienced a spontaneous breakout of Carnaval as Brazillian legend Sergio Mendes and his band polished off a night of intoxicating rhythms by inviting a troupe of female dancers into the crowd to shake out some of their own. This colorful presentation - the primary color on display being "skin" - was enough to make one concerned parent cover her awestruck ten-year old's eyes with her hands. The rest of us sat back and watched, thankful that there were no fireworks this particular night at the Bowl, as they might have distracted from the explosive booty-shaking taking place in the front boxes.
But for the nearly three hours leading up to that moment, the stage had been occupied by serious musicians playing a multitude of musical styles with rhythmic orgin in Latin and South America, often applied to American jazz standards: So Cal resident and master conguero Poncho Sanchez covered Herbie Hancock, Horace Silver and even Parliament-Funkadelic, while Puerto Rican piano titan Eddie Palmieri's New York crew offered a ferocious rip through Thelonious Monk's "In Walked Bud."