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O. C. LIVE

Caravana Leads Way in Cozy, Familiar Parade

May 30, 1996|BILL KOHLHAASE | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The Dana Point Jazz Festival isn't one of those stadium-sized events. Held at the cozy Renaissance Dana Point, it offers a variety of bands from the area on the patio and, in the evening, in the dining room. The three-day event has the feel of an extended club concert.

Being featured this year--along with fest regulars Greg Vail, Ron Kobayashi and Bopsicle with singer Stephanie Haynes--is Caravana, a seven-piece band that combines African, Latin, jazz and rock styles into a rhythmic hybrid of its own. The L.A. band has played a host of clubs in Southern California, including the House of Blues, La Ve Lee and the Galaxy.

"We have a lot of influences, a lot of things we listen to," says the group's timbale player, Kenny Hudson. "We've been influenced by a lot of African music. Olatunji is one of my favorites. Santana has been a big influence. I love Milton Nascimento, so that's brought in a big Brazilian influence."

Many of Caravana's members have tasted the big time. Hudson has played with Stevie Wonder and Seal. Singer Jesse Acuna has worked with the world-beat jazz band Hiroshima. Drummer Walter Rodriguez has worked with Vikki Carr and Strunz & Farah. Bassist Derrick Murdock has toured with Sheena Easton and Dave Koz. Conga player Ron Powell has been heard with Sergio Mendes and Kenny G. And guitarist Juan Carlos Quintero has toured the country with his own Brazilian-influenced band.

Speaking of Latin music, Bobby Redfield, Cal Tjader's guitarist for 10 years, will be back with his own band: bassist Ernie Nunez, drummer Steve Gutierrez, pianist Quinn Johnson and Caravana percussionist Powell.

Vail, Kobayashi, Simpatico and the Tyrone Anthony Group will pay two sets each; Redfield's band, Caravana and Bopsicle will play three. KSBR-FM (88.5) will broadcast the entire event live.

* What: The Dana Point Jazz Festival.

* When: Friday-Sunday. See box for performance schedule.

* Where: Renaissance Dana Point, 24701 Del Prado.

* Whereabouts: Take Pacific Coast Highway to Del Prado.

* Wherewithal: Separate covers for daytime and evening events, $3-$7. All-inclusive pass, $10.

* Where to call: (714) 661-6003.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

THE DANA POINT JAZZ FESTIVAL

Friday:

* 8:30 p.m.: Bobby Redfield's Latin Jazz Quintet.

Saturday:

* 1 p.m.: Simpatico.

* 4:30: The Tyrone Anthony Group.

* 8:30: Caravana.

Sunday:

* 11:30 a.m.: The Ron Kobayashi Trio with saxophonist Steve Hommel.

* 3:30 p.m.: The Greg Vail Group.

* 7 p.m.: Bopsicle with Stephanie Haynes.

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