I first heard Danilo on records back in the '90's playing trio with John Patitucci and Roy Haynes. Among many of his earlier mentoring experiences was his tenure in Haynes trio where he began to establish his reputation in the global jazz scene. I was always struck by the combination of elements and styles present in Perez's playing. Even today at times one hears a strong influence from Herbie Hancock coloured with the Latin Amercian rhythms he no doubt absorbed from his upbringing in Panama. However to name drop Hancock's influence on him doesn't adequately describe his overall musical presence in any of the ensembles he performs in. When I've had the pleasure of witnessing a concert by the Wayne Shorter quartet I've been deeply impressed by his spirit of commitment to the music being created in the moment. His musical personality is obviously one that puts emotional communication ahead of stylistic or even pianistic concerns. It's almost as if he's trying to get away from sounding like a pianist, something one might even say about Shorter's playing as a saxophonist.
One record of Danilo's that I find particularly beautiful I think in large part due to what seems to be his love of songs regardless of the style in which they are composed is a Verve release from 10 years ago entitled "...till then". The record features music by Joni Mitchel as well as the song "Overjoyed" by Stevie Wonder. Hear a preview of the cd here
Please let me know if you agree with my chord symbols….