We are proud to announce that Grammy award winning percussionist Poncho Sanchez will be recognized as our Guest of Honor at the 38th Telluride Jazz Festival. For more than three decades as both a leader and a sideman, conguero Poncho Sanchez has stirred up a fiery stew of straightahead jazz, gritty soul music, and infectious melodies and rhythms from a variety of Latin American and South American sources. His influences are numerous, but among the more prominent figures that inform his music are two of the primary architects of Latin jazz – conga drummer and composer Chano Pozo and trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie.
With his Los Angeles upbringing immediately immersing him into an unusual cross section of sounds from straight ahead Jazz, Latin, and American Soul, it was Coltrane, Davis and Mongo Santamaria that raised him, and instigated self-taught endeavors into guitar, flute, drums, timbales and eventually congas. Poncho landed a spot in the Latin legend Cal Tjader’s band in 1975, and seven years later signed to Concord Records where he has released two dozen critically acclaimed albums since, including the Grammy winning Concord Picante label album Latin Soul in 2000.