Miguel Zenón Featured on Critics Picks: Top 50 New Albums and Top 10 Historical Releases

We compiled our top 50 new releases and top 10 historical/reissue recordings of 2009 from year-end lists by our critics. To see each voter’s ballot, go to this page. Only CDs and box sets released between Nov. 1, 2008, and Oct. 31, 2009 were eligible. Some releases may have slipped through the cracks, however, as release dates shifted or weren’t available.

Original blurbs by Evan Haga and Jeff Tamarkin. Review excerpts by Thomas Conrad, Steve Greenlee, Christopher Loudon, Bill Milkowski, Mike Shanley, George Varga, Michael J. West and Josef Woodard.

Top 50 New Releases Read more »

Submitted by admin on January 1st, 2010 — 01:00am

Two of the Top 10 Innovative Jazz Releases of 2009

Miguel Zenón’s ‘Esta Plena’ and Claudia Acuña’s ‘En Este Momento’ are two of Howard Reich’s “Top 10 innovative jazz releases of 2009” featured in the Chicago Tribune! Reich writes that these releases represent “Innovative work abounded in 2009, with particularly strong contributions from Chicago artists.” Congratulations, Miguel and Claudia!

Here are the descriptions of the two Marsalis Music releases from Reich’s list: Read more »

Submitted by admin on December 13th, 2009 — 01:00am

Like a nimble jet aircraft, Miguel Zenón's Esta Plena leaps into flight from its very first notes.

Like a nimble jet aircraft, Miguel Zenón’s Esta Plena leaps into flight from its very first notes. The album arrives not long after Awake (Marsalis Music, 2008), Zenón’s jazz quartet/string quartet outing of 2008, but it follows more logically on the heels of 2005’s Jíbaro (Marsalis Music), a jazz meditation on the rural music of Zenón’s native Puerto Rico. Esta Plena, different but related, finds the alto saxophonist melding authentic plena music with the forward-thinking jazz aesthetic he’s developed as a New Yorker. Read more »

Submitted by admin on December 12th, 2009 — 01:00am

Saxophonist Miguel Zenón scores first nominations for Grammys.

You have to search deep in the 109 categories of the Grammy Awards nominees list to find a Latino artist, but almost halfway through it, you score.

Miguel Zenón, 32, a Puerto Rican saxophonist prodigy, received his first two nominations last Wednesday for his fifth CD, “Esta Plena,” a captivating jazz tribute to plena, an African derived rhythm from the Caribbean island.

“It’s an honor being nominated, and I’m sure it will help us spread our music in many ways,” said Zenón, who lives in Washington Heights. “It always feel good when people appreciate what you do.” Read more »

Submitted by admin on December 9th, 2009 — 01:00am

Miguel Zenón Receives TWO Grammy Nominations!!

Marsalis Music’s Miguel Zenón has received two Grammy nominations!! One for For Best Improvised Jazz Solo on ‘Villa Palmeras’ from his album ‘Esta Plena’ and the other for Best Latin Jazz Album. The 52nd Annual GRAMMY Awards will be held on “GRAMMY Sunday,” Jan. 31, 2010, at Staples Center in Los Angeles. We hope you’ll be watching!! Congratulations, Miguel!! 

Submitted by admin on December 3rd, 2009 — 01:00am