Bob Sands – 10 Questions For A Jazz Maestro In Madrid

We catch up with Bob Sands, Madrileño via New York now coming up to his third decade in the Spanish capital.

  1. What do you play? – I play mostly tenor and alto saxophone but also soprano saxophone, flute, clarinet and what I call functional piano as well.
  2. What brought you to Spain ?– I just came to visit a friend living in Barcelona and another one here in Madrid. I had wanted to live in Paris for a year so after visiting Madrid, I thought it would make a good transition for 6 months or a year. In May it´ll be 28 years!
  3. Who did you listen to when growing up? – Dexter Gordon, Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, Joe Henderson and Stanley Turrentine were my biggest influences in my early formative years.
  4. Whose Aranjuez versión was better? – Chet Baker or Miles Davis? – Miles´ hands down. 
  5. When growing up were you aware of Spanish popular music? – Not even a little…
  6. How would you rate the Madrid live music scene in general and jazz in particular? – There are many more players at a high level than in ´92 but sadly, There are less places to play. Jazz in Spain is generally very under appreciated in my view.
  7. Who have you worked with? Lionel Hampton, Dizzy Gillespie, The Glenn Miller Orch., Gary Smulyan…Lots more
  8. What was the origin the band? – I had directed student bands for many years and thought it would be fun to put a professional band together for my birthday in 2000. It was supposed to be a one-off but everybody wanted to continue..
  9. What do you like about living & working in Madrid? – The people mostly but also it´s a more relaxed lifestyle than New York
  10. What do you dislike about living & working in Madrid? – Not nearly enough live music for such a big city and I´m still not used to the lack of punctuality..

The Bob Sands Band will be playing the Royal Jazz Festival on the 26th July at 22.30

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