Poncho Sanchez

With Tito Puente gone to that great Palladium in the sky, Poncho Sanchez has secured a position over the past decade as the new undisputed king of the tirelessly touring, mainstream-club-dominating, airplay-friendly Latin-jazz bandleaders. He damn near has the job to himself. True, there are more interesting players out there exploring an Afro-American/Caribbean fusion, but the Mexican-American Sanchez has (like Puente) found a fun formula, stuck to it, and gained a ton of deserved popularity in the process. Jazz standards and novelty covers, bits of boogaloo, and the best of Latin traditional rhythms are his stock-in-trade. His bandmates are always solid, but it’s Poncho’s own perfectly sculpted solos that carry the night. His melodic drumming, joyful demeanor, and well-honed showmanship would do Puente proud. MARK D. FEFER

Mon., Dec. 29, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m.; Tue., Dec. 30, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m.; Wed., Dec. 31, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m., 2008

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