Tocador comprises repertoire culled from the music of the Uruguayan drummer and percussion colourist, José San Martín who made a name for himself after recording with the legendary composer and pianist Hugo Fattoruso. In 1992 José San Martín made his home in Spain after travelling via Brasil, where he had recorded music with Zeca Assumpção and Mauro Senise; later travelling to the United States and finally to Madrid. Here he has had noted success from recordings with Federico Lechner, Santiago Reyes, Jerry González, Olga Román, Gladston Galliza, Luis Salinas, Antonio Serrano and a host of other luminaries.
This 2016 release features music written and recorded by José San Martín in 1999, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2012, 2014 and 2015. During this time the breadth of his compositional skills and virtuosity as a drummer has evolved considerably and as a result Martín has now become a first-call drummer in Madrid and the reasons are all over Tocador. His electrifying speed is matched only by his flashing tone and colour palette. Together they form an awe-inspiring rhythmic edifice which he has constructed with Juan San Martín on electric bass. The rhythm section is completed by the ubiquitous pianist Jorge Vera, keyboards player Coco Fernández, guitarists Gladston Galliza, Nicolás Mora, Sergio Menem and Arturo Lledó, as well as saxophonist Lisandro Mansilla, with bassist Santiago Greco helping out on three songs.
The performance by José San Martín is marked by his rich marbled sound on snares and tom-tom drums, and depth bombs from his bass drum, punctuated by crisp, sunny splashes on his myriad cymbals. This mountainous sound works its way through the smoky, sensuous guitar of Gladston Galliza on “Saint Denis”, ripples through the roaring tenor saxophone on “Mil Papeles”. But it can also be murmuring yet penetrating , as on “Se Va el Avión” as well as on “Ahora Sí” and although his entry on “Tocador” is full of explosive thunder and resonant reverberation, it never threatens to distract or to deconstruct the melodic line of the piece. This characteristic bluster is evident on many of the pieces and only serves to set the rhythmic bar higher each time.
For listeners who have not had a chance to pore over other full-length albums by José San Martín, Tocador serves up his characteristically effervescent musicality on twelve remarkable works all but one of which have his hand in composition.
Track List: 1: Tango Español; 2: Saint Denis; 3: Enero 10; 4: Sarunga; 5: Tun Tun Pá; 6: Tocador; 7: Gatoloco; 8: Ese Aire (Bulerdombe); 9: Se Va el Avión; 10: Chaicosqui 7 11; 11: Mil Papeles; 12: Ahora Sí.
Personnel: Coco Fernández: keyboards (1, 6, 9); Jorge Vera: piano (3, 7, 11); Gladston Galliza: nylon-string guitar (2, 6), vocals (2); Nicolás Mora: electric guitar (4, 8, 12); Sergio Menem: nylon-string guitar and cello (5); Arturo Lledó: nylon-string guitar and acoustic guitar (9); Lisandro Mansilla: tenor saxophone (3, 7, 11); Juan San Martín: electric bass (2, 4 – 6, 8 – 10, 12); Santiago Greco: electric bass (3, 7, 11); José San Martín: drums, percussion (2, 9), candombe drums (6), and vocals (2, 6).