A friend of mine here at SDSU, knowing my fondness for jazz trumpeters and Lee Morgan (and myself being a former trumpet player for seven years), recommended I give Arturo Sandoval a listen. I'm glad I did.
Sandoval is from Artemisa, in the Havana Province of Cuba. He defected to the United States in 1990 while touring with Dizzy Gillespie and became a naturalized citizen in 1998. While in Cuba in his early days, he listened to the jazz greats Charlie Parker, Clifford Brown, and Dizzy Gillespie. These three were the pioneers of modern postwar jazz, developing a sound unlike anything jazz had heard before by placing a premium on virtuosity, blistering tempos, and technical variations on a standard set of chord changes. The 1950s in general were a transitional period for jazz, shifting from bebop to hard bop, and if you listen to At Basin Street by Clifford Brown and Max Roach (Brown on trumpet, Roach on drums, and Sonny Rollins on tenor sax), you'll get a taste of the changes jazz underwent. Songs like "What is This Thing Called Love?" and "I'll Remember April" are in the classic bebop tradition, while others like "Step Lightly (Junior's Arrival)" and "Powell's Prances" look ahead to the hard bop genre pioneered by groups like Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers or artists like Bud Powell (of whom "Powell's Prances" is named).
The musical influence of Gillespie et al. is easily discernable when you listen to Sandoval. You also sense his Latin roots in his music, which might also have been influenced by Sandoval's hero, Dizzy Gillespie, who was a big proponent of Afro-Cuban jazz for years (this style became known as "Cubop" for a time). Give Sandoval's rendition of "A Night in Tunisia" (originally performed by Gillespie and Parker) a listen to get a flavor of his style. "I Remember Clifford" (which I first heard performed by Lee Morgan) is also worth listening to. That, folks, is good jazz performed by a first-rate trumpeter.