The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel (2010 album)

Cover of the Unforgettable Sounds of Juan Garcia Esquivel Album

Our Acclaimed Esquivel Big Band Album


Now playing in 7,000 Starbucks stores world-wide.

Sunday Times London

4 stars
"…exquisite attention to details…"—Sunday Times London

Huffington post

Top 10 albums for 2011—Huffington Post

Best of the Year Discs for 2011—Audiophile Audition


"…incredible arrangements, musicianship and artistic direction…"—Downbeat

Boston Globe logo

"…a marvelously flexible unit…"—Boston Globe

This album features Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica's transcriptions of the intellectual space-age pop sounds of Juan Garcia Esquivel. Recorded live by the 23-piece big band, the Orchestrotica pays tribute to Esquivel's unique contributions to the world of lounge, studio orchestras, and latin big-band music. This is the first recording of the Orchestrotica's transcriptions of Esquivel's lost arrangements and is the debut in the Exotica for Modern Living series.

1. Andalucia Lecuona
2. Night and Day Porter
3. Take the A Train Strayhorn
4. The Boulevard of Broken Dreams Warren-Dubin
5. Music Makers JAmes-Raye
6. Frenesi Domingeuz
7. Sentimental Journey Green-Brown-Homer
8. Mini Skirt Esquivel
9. Let's Dance Baldridge-Stone- Bonime
10. Dancing in the Dark Dietze-Schwartz
11. Street Scene Newman

Check out the store for more CDs in the Exotica for Modern Living Series.

All prices subject to change without notice. All items are non-refundable although if you really don't like a CD, we'll let you return it if it's in brand-new condition.

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Press release for The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel

Sunday Times London

"4 stars…exquisite attention to details…" —Clive Davis

Boston Globe logo

"…a marvelously flexible unit that can morph from a small, swinging combo to the full-blown 23-piece orchestra…" —Jonathan Perry


2011 Rising Star Big Band

"…incredible arrangements, musicianship and artistic direction…I’m sure the only thing better than hearing the record would be seeing this group live."—Frank Alkyer


"…If John Zorn is an exotica Picasso, O'Neill is his Georges-Braque counterpart in cubism's transposition to music…as Braque may have been the finer cubist, O'Neill may be, in the long run, a stronger exoticist than Zorn." —Gordon Marshall

Minneapolis Star Tribune

"… something for that hard-to-shop-for eccentric on your Christmas shopping list…"—Martin Keller


"… something marvelous…The world needs more cool sounds like this…"—Carl F. Gauze


Top CDs of 2010 —Bruce Lindsay

Jazz Favorite for 2010 —Mark Saleski

"…so beautifully interprets Esquivel's work…breathes fresh life into these marvelously odd arrangements, with a clear understanding of just what their creator intended them to do… an album that just wants to play and have fun." —Bruce Lindsay

Exotica for Modern Living

In 2010, Mr. Ho decided to release a series of albums over the next few years under the title "Exotica for Modern Living." These records will attempt to take the best elements of mid-century living, music, and culture and merge them with modern life to provide listeners with a "retro futuristic" listening experience. The old sounds of space-age pop meet the new sounds of global jazz, and chamber music influenced by jazz, world music, and orchestral/classical works too. We hope you enjoy these new recordings (and the beautiful series of artwork by Javier Garcia)!

The series includes:

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The album features:

  • Trumpets: Yaure Muniz (Buena Vista Social Club, Afro Cuban All Stars), Paul Perfetti (Les Miserables, Boston Pops, Boston Musica Viva), Mark Sanchez (Allstonians, too many to list!)
  • Trombone: Joe Stewart (various)
  • Bass Trombone: Chris Beaudry (Rochester Phil., RI Phil, numerous others)
  • Horn: Ken Pope (Boston Modern Orch. Project; Opera Boston)
  • Woodwinds: Paul Ahlstrand (Tim Gearan Band, Giant Kings, tons others), Jared Sims (Cecil McBee, Mango Blue, Han Bennink), Chris Veilleux (Glenn Miller, Banda Rika, Saxophone Support Group), Russ Gershon (Either Orchestra/Accurate Records), w/ special guest Geni Skendo (various) on bass flute
  • Vocals: Paul Pampinella (5 O'Clock Shadow, Berklee College of Music), Leenie Doran (Beantown Swing Orchestra), Yolanda Scott, Jennifer O'Neill (Musica Viva NYC, Accord NYC, Amor Artis NYC)
  • Organ: Rusty Scott
  • Accordion: Rusty Wutkiewicz
  • Pedal Steel Guitar: Tim Obetz (various)
  • Electric, Acoustic Guitars: Tev Stevig (Klezwoods, Fa Diyez Ensemble)
  • Drums: Mike Walsh (Analog Method, Equal Time, Jen Kearney And The Lost Onion)
  • Percussion: Noriko Terada (various), Jeremy Lang (freelance orchestras)
  • Piano, Percussion: Mr. Ho of course (
  • Bass: Jason Davis (Earthsounds Online)


Recorded by John Weston at Futura Productions (Roslindale, MA). Mixed by Ducky Carlisle at Ice Station Zebra (Medford, MA) and John Weston. Mastered by Mark Donahue at SoundMirror in Jamaica Plain, MA. Produced by Brother Cleve and Mr. Ho (Brian O'Neill) with help from Tev Stevig (Kafana, Klezwoods, Fa Diyez Ensemble). Artwork by Javier Garcia (see his great mid-century modern design blog: No Barcode).