History of the Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Band

Band Picture 2007-8

The Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Sextet was founded in Madison, WI in 1998 and has been entertaining audiences throughout the Midwest with their renditions of classic and original Latin Jazz ever since. Voted Madison’s Favorite Jazz Band fourteen straight years by the “Isthmus Reader’s Poll” (2000-2014), and recipient of three “Madison Area Music Awards” (2005-2007) as Madison’s best Latin Artist and best Latin Album (“Viva el Cardinal” and “Mambo O Muerte”) the Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Sextet continues to impress and entertain audiences wherever they play. The Tony Castañeda Latin Sextet Band has been a favorite at the Isthmus Jazz Festival, Live at Five and other local venues and festivals and has performed and demonstrated Latin music for a number of public schools in an effort to expose more people to latin music. The band’s tight sound has also been honed by over eight years worth of free weekly Sunday night gigs at the Cardinal Bar in Madison, WI.

The TCLJS has performed with some of the international stars in Latin jazz such as Grammy award winning trumpeter/percussionist Jerry Gonzalez of the Fort Apache Band, Grammy award winning Cuban Percussionist Roberto Vizcaino of the Chucho Valdez Group, and Orlando “Maraca” Valle along with several members of his band. The band invited New York City vocalist Carolyn Leonhart of Steely Dan to join in their 2001 appearance at Madison’s Isthmus Jazz Festival.

The band has also opened for and played with a number of famous Latin Jazz musicians including Tito Puente, conguero virtuoso Giovanni Hidalgo, Los Munequitos, bassist Johnny Benitez, John Santos and Omar Sosa, Poncho Sanchez, Los Lobos, the band War and most recently, piano legend Eddie Palmieri.

Tony and the band released their second album, “Mambo O Muerte” in 2007 and follows up on the 2003 release of “Viva el Cardinal” a live recording of classic Latin Jazz hits written by the likes of Mongo Satamaria, Cal Tjader and Orlando Valle.

The new material, written and arranged by the band’s saxophonist (Anders Svanoe) and pianist (Dave Stoler) are all original and dance-able compositions with an emphasis on dance-able forms like Mambo, Salsa and Cha-Cha. (IT) stays true to the diasporic traditions of Afro-Cuban and clave based Latin rhythms as well as modern swing and funk/boogaloo.