Miguel Zenón: A jazz genius takes on Puerto Rico

Date: 10.09.2009
Publication: Chicago Tribune
Author: Howard Reich


The music of Puerto Rico has played in Miguel Zenón’s imagination since his childhood in San Juan, where he was born.

But it wasn’t until a few years ago that he began to examine his musical heritage in depth, with remarkable results (and we refer not only to the prestigious MacArthur Fellowship, or “genius grant,” he was awarded in 2008).
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Submitted by Ben on October 9th, 2009 — 12:00am

Album Review: Miguel Zenón's 'Esta Plena'

Date: 10.04.2009
Publication: About.com
Author: Jacob Teichroew


Miguel Zenón’s Esta Plena is a continuation of the saxophonist’s previous work, complete with exuberant melodies and voluble phrases that float above knotty rhythmic terrain. The core group, featuring pianist Luis Perdomo, bassist Hans Glawischnig, and drummer Henry Cole, is the same heard on Zenón’s last album, Awake, although Esta Plena is fitted around traditional Puerto Rican plena music.
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Submitted by Ben on October 4th, 2009 — 12:00am

Feeling a global influence

As music director of Machito and his Afro-Cubans in the 1940s, the late Cuban saxophonist and bandleader Mario Bauzá was a key figure in the development of what came to be known as Latin jazz. Yet, he often railed against the term.

I don’t know what they’re talking about when people talk about Latin jazz,” he would say impatiently. “Nobody is playing Latin jazz. What they are playing is Afro-Cuban jazz.”

Then, point made, he would allow exceptions. Read more »

Submitted by admin on October 4th, 2009 — 12:00am

Promising Chilean-born singer finds her voice; Claudia Acuña at The Jazz Showcase

Even a decade ago, when the Chilean-born singer Claudia Acuña was launching her recording career, she sounded like nobody else in jazz. The South American sensibility that colored everything she sang, as well as the sometimes smoldering, sometimes imploring quality of her vocals made her an emerging artist of unmistakable promise.

But now, seasoned by uncounted performances around the world and the various hard knocks that inevitably come with a career in music, Acuña has matured into one of the most searing jazz vocalists of the under-40 generation. Read more »

Submitted by admin on September 26th, 2009 — 12:00am

Marsalis Family To Release Live Album For Music Center

Date: 09.25.2009
Publication: Daily News Headlines

 

Combined generations of the Marsalis family will release their Music Redeems (Marsalis Music) on Aug. 24. The CD is a recording of the family’s performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., last year when patriarch Ellis Marsalis received the Duke Ellington Jazz Festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Proceeds from the disc’s sales will benefit the Ellis Marsalis Center For Music In New Orleans. Read more »

Submitted by Josh on September 25th, 2009 — 12:00am