Live! 2-CD set
This 2-disk, twenty-song CD was recorded at the Palace Station, Las Vegas, in 2005. It comprises a fiery mix of original songs and covers performed in the band’s unrivaled signature style that effortlessly spans and blends the best in the funk, soul, salsa, and jazz genres with dazzling individual musicianship, soaring vocals, and an all-of-one-mind exuberant seamlessness.
Bandleader Jerry Lopez assembled a 14-man crew of Vegas’s finest show musicians for this latest iteration of his venerable group “Santa Fe” that arrived on the Vegas scene from New Mexico in the 1970’s. Howling standing-room-only crowds have crammed into the new band’s Monday night gigs ever since — most of Vegas’s other A-List performers and many visiting musical celebrities routinely among them.
Covers include unique, blistering renditions of tunes by the esteemed likes of Stevie Wonder, Earth, Wind & Fire, Michael Ruff, Bill Champlin, Joel Rosenblatt, Lennon & McCartney, Michel Camillo, Chuckii Booker, Pages, Skylark, and Wayne Wallace. The original songs range in style from the band’s singular take on thundering, snappy funk liberally spiced with salsa, to Jerry’s beautiful, countryfied ballad “Let Me Come Back Home.”
The 6-man Fat City Horns — Rob Mader, Phil Wigfall, Marc Solis, Nathan Tanouye, Gil Kaupp, and Danny Falcone — conjure up an image of the old Doc Severinson Tonight Show Orchestra gone to the ‘hood and the barrio to get the nasty on.
The rhythm section is a nuclear reactor of funk anchored by veteran show drummer and original Santa Fe member Eddie Garcia and the jaw-dropping bass virtuoso Rochon Westmoreland (a Four Tops alumnus, the rest of whose pedigree is far too long and broad to list here). Earth, Wind & Fire alumnus Johnny Johnson burns up the guitar and lead vocals alongside Jerry Lopez, and keyboardist/vocalist Jamie Hosmer could headline in his own right. Dazzling keyboardist/arranger Dave Richardson, and veteran percussionists Gabriel Santana Falcon and Carlos David Perez (Ricky Martin tour) round out the Santa Fe lineup.
Founder and Leader Jerry Lopez, has toured and performed as a featured sideman with Tom Scott, Bill Champlin, Ricky Martin, Marc Anthony, Wayne Brady, and many others. He has recorded with just about all of his heroes, and worked as Musical Director for countless big production shows, bands, and touring acts. He plays in the showrooms in Las Vegas 5 to 6 nights a week, and works as a staff producer, writer and vocalist/musician for Alchemy Productions LLC, and Manteca Music Inc. Santa Fe and The Fat City Horns represent his unwavering passion and commitment to the music and those in the trenches. This band is rightfully considered by many to be the crown jewels of Las Vegas music.