David Sanchez

It's interesting how entire lives are often shaped by coincidence. For tenor sax player David Sanchez, chance brought him to his current station among Latin Grammy winners and jazz pros. At age fifteen, the native of Puerto Rico stumbled upon his sister's Miles Davis music. Later, at Escuela Libre de Música in San Juan, Sanchez decided to pursue a career in drumming. But the school had a surplus of drummers, and so began his love affair with the sax. Since then, Sanchez has studied at Rutgers University, worked with jazz giants such as Dizzie Gillespie, and released seven critically acclaimed albums.

Sanchez's 2004 Latin Grammy-winning record, Coral, exemplifies both his virtuosity and his range. The tracks drip dreamily with a heavy air of romance. Sanchez flexes a powerful style that calls to mind Coltrane, even as he interprets music by Brazilian and Argentine artists such as Antonio Carlos Jobim, Alberto Ginastera, and Heitor Villa-Lobos. Sanchez's regular sextet plays with the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, mixing the Czech ensemble's classical repertoire with mainstream jazz to create a sound that's timeless. — Alexandra Quiñones

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