For years the go-to pianist and arranger for artists such as Mongo SantaMaria, Dave Valentin, Gato Barbieri,The Fort Apache Band and many others, Bill O'Connell has perhaps more that any other pianist developed a true melding of Latin and Jazz music. His own playing-from its robust chordal comping to its exuberant and sometimes knotty solos-transcends categorization and combines rhythmic complexities with glittering single note runs in a sort of Bud Powell-meets-Chick-Corea sound. O'Connell provides a thoughtful program of originals and a few re-imagined standards filled with energy and high spirits from a powerful voice in Latin Jazz.


With certified Latin chops on his resume but leaving himself open to freely interpret what Latin means, O’Connell dazzles and delights with another set that’s anything but more of the same. Caliente mucho!
— Chris Spector, Midwest Record -- December 2015
 
There is no doubt this jazz cat (Bill O’Connell) has game; more like fire-breathing musical passion tempered with immense intellectual dominance of Jazz and Latin music that may be good enough to rival some of the great Latin Jazz pianists of the last quarter century: Chucho Valdes, George Dalto, Gonzalo Rubalcaba and others.
— Bobby Ramirez , Latinjazzclub -- June 2008
 
When pianist Bill O’Connell took his first tentative steps into the world of Latin Jazz in the mid-70’s, he wouldn’t have dared to predict that “Afro-Cuban” would come to define his artistic persona and over time, he would come to be recognized as a true master of the demanding genre.
— Mark Holston, JAZZIZ -- April 2008
 
This is a pianist with immense “player power” as it were. The range of his artistic spectrum seems limitless, and I suggest my readers will be moved by this colossus of musical dignity and improvisational authority.
— George Carroll, ejazznews 2004