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Sammy Figueroa

Sammy Figueroa has long been regarded as one of the world's great musicians. As one of the music's leading percussionists he has played on countless records and is well-known for his versatility in a multitude of musical styles. Besides playing with some of the world's greatest pop stars, such as David Bowie, Chaka Khan and Mariah Carey, Sammy has also played with a multitude of distinguished jazz artists including Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, Quincy Jones, George Benson, and many, many more.

When Sammy plays percussion he tells a story, creating a playful conversation with other musicians and taking the listener on a musical journey . As one of the world's greatest congueros he is currently considered to be the most likely candidate to inherit the mantles of Mongo Santamaria and Ray Barretto.

Sammy Figueroa was born in the Bronx and raised in Puerto Rico, the son of romantic singer Charlie Figueroa. After many years as New York's number one percussionist, in 2001 Sammy relocated to South Florida. It was there that Sammy discovered a rich treasure trove of amazing Latin jazz virtuosos from Cuba, Venezuela, Brazil, Colombia and Argentina, and was inspired to find his voice as a solo artist. Putting a band together with the best players in town Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion debuted at the Hollywood Jazz Festival and since then he has never looked back.

Sammy's first album, "...and Sammy Walked In", included a title track written in his honor by Michel Camillo. Three more albums followed: "The Magician", "Urban Nature" and "Imaginary World". All three of these albums are notable for brilliant compositions and arrangements by Venezuelan composer/musicians Silvano Monasterios on piano and Gabriel Vivas on bass. "And Sammy Walked In" and "The Magician" have both been honored with Grammy® Nominations for Best Latin Jazz Album.

In addition to his own albums, Sammy has also co-produced several important jazz and world music albums with the award-winning world music producer Rachel Faro. Notable productions include two albums with the phenomenal Cuban a cappella group Vocal Sampling (Sire/Elektra), 'Celebremos Navidad' with Fania cuatro hero Yomo Toro (Ashe) and 'Talisman', a celebration of Brazilian song and Latin percussion with singer Glaucia Nasser (Savant/Highnote).

From 2010 to 2013, Sammy toured the world with the great saxophone master Sonny Rollins. Sammy also appears on Sonny Rollins' latest three albums, the Grammy® Nominated 'Road Shows Vol. 2', 'Road Shows Vol. 3' and the recently released 'Holding The Stage, Road Shows Vol. 4'.

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Radio & Podcasts

Mike Clark, George Benson & Sammy Figueroa

Read "Mike Clark, George Benson & Sammy Figueroa" reviewed by Joe Dimino


From a modern legend and artist of many talents, we begin the 820th Episode of Neon Jazz with Sammy Figueroa and music from am album that honors his late father, Searching for a Memory. We follow that with another legend and a man that gave Sammy his start in Herbie Mann. We also dip into music from some modern master including Olivia Maisel, Aaron Diehl, Miki Yamanaka and George Benson. Finally, we finish off a flush hour of jazz with ...

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Album Review

Rodrigo Lima: Saga

Read "Saga" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki


“I fell in love with the jazz guitar--all kinds of jazz guitarists, from Jim Hall to Pat Metheny to Luis Bonfá, by listening to their records," explains Brazilian composer, arranger, bandleader and guitarist Rodrigo Lima. Saga luxuriously extends this jazz guitar love affair across the American and Brazilian continents--it was recorded in New York, Los Angeles, Rio de Janeiro and Curitiba--and across the two CDs of Lima's utterly magnificent recorded debut. Producer Arnaldo DeSouteiro elegantly ...

162
Album Review

Sammy Figueroa & His Latin Jazz Explosion: Urban Nature

Read "Urban Nature" reviewed by Edward Blanco


Urban Nature blends elements of modern jazz fusion with percussive Latin jazz rhythms in a highly charged session from master percussionist Sammy Figueroa and his Latin Jazz Explosion. The two previous recordings with this very same group, The Magician (Savant, 2007) and And Sammy Walked In (Savant, 2005), both garnished Grammy nominations for the Best Latin Jazz Album, and this follow-up sizzler deserves no less consideration. The Bronx-born bomber of percussion has long been a leading voice in the world ...

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Performance / Tour

Latin jazz at its finest, drawing at times from bebop and Broadway

Latin jazz at its finest, drawing at times from bebop and Broadway

Source: Ken Franckling's Jazz Notes

Conguero Sammy Figueroa brought a quintet version of His Latin Jazz Explosion band to Sarasota on Monday, November 22. As befits its name, the band and its leader were on musical fire all night for this Jazz Club of Sarasota concert. Figueroa spent many years as a leading Latin percussionist in New York City, working with a wide variety of major musicians, including Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, David Bowie and Chaka Khan. This Bronx native who was raised in Puerto ...

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Radio

Live Jazz On WLRN.org featuring Sammy Figueroa and his Latin Jazz Explosion

Live Jazz On WLRN.org featuring Sammy Figueroa and his Latin Jazz Explosion

Source: Ed Bell

Please join our audience for another great musical performance on WLRN's South Florida Arts Beat on Friday, January 13th, 2012 Featuring SAMMY FIGUEROA and his LATIN JAZZ EXPLOSION This New York born (Bronx), Miami resident is one of the world's leading percussionists. He has performed and recorded with legends in Pop, Rock, Latin, Jazz, Brazilian and Rhythm and Blues for decades. Stars such as Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, Chaka Kahn, David Bowie, Mariah Carey, Dave Sanborn, Quincy Jones, Lena Horne, ...

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Recording

Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion - Urban Nature (2011)

Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion - Urban Nature (2011)

Source: Something Else!

Rock fans know him for his work with David Bowie and the Average White Band, jazz fans from moments alongside Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins (they're on tour now), soul and pop fans from turns with Chaka Khan and Mariah Carey. But Sammy Figueroa's real passion, this record makes clear is Latin jazz. A move from New York City, where he was long a first-call percussionist, to South Florida sparked this career turn. The stark contrast of those two environs ...

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Performance / Tour

Grammy Nominee Sammy Figueroa Appearing at Berkeley's la Pea Cultural Center

Grammy Nominee Sammy Figueroa Appearing at Berkeley's la Pea Cultural Center

Source: All About Jazz

Grammy nominee and one of the world's premier Latin jazz bands Sammy Figueroa and his Latin Jazz Explosion appearing at Berkeley's La Pea Cultural Center Long known as one of the world's great players, percussionist Sammy Figueroa has performed and recorded with artists such as Miles Davis, the Brecker Brothers, Mariah Carey, Chaka Khan, and John McLaughlan. Saturday September 13, 8 pm. $16 adv. $18 at the door La Pea Cultural Ctr. 3105 Shattuck ...

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Performance / Tour

Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion at the Zinc Bar

Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion at the Zinc Bar

Source: All About Jazz

Sammy Figueroa--congueroa extraordinaire--and his band will be playing at the Zinc Bar (NYC) September 2nd-4th, 2008 - for an audience hungry to see Figueroa play his hometown once again. Most all jazz connoisseurs know Figueroa for his eclectic and vast repertoire - his musical fluidity and incredible charisma. If you've never seen Sammy & the band - it's a must. Run don't walk - for a most rhythmic night of Latin jazz at its finest. Check out sammyfigueroa.com for more ...

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Festival

Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion with Special Guest Brian Lynch at Columbus Jazz & Rib Fest on July 22nd

Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion with Special Guest Brian Lynch at Columbus Jazz & Rib Fest on July 22nd

Source: Jim Eigo, Jazz Promo Services

The legendary percussionist Sammy Figueroa and His Latin Jazz Explosion are very pleased to announce that they will be performing at Columbus, Ohio's Jazz and Rib Fest, on July 22nd, 2007. Now in its 28th year, this festival is one of the most important jazz gatherings in the world.

The band will be playing music from their Grammy-nominated first album “And Sammy Walked In", and their recently released second album, “The Magician" (both on Savant Records), which The New York ...

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Recording

New CDs by Saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, Percussionist Sammy Figueroa and Vocalist Pamela Luss Set for March 13th Release on Savant Records

New CDs by Saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, Percussionist Sammy Figueroa and Vocalist Pamela Luss Set for March 13th Release on Savant Records

Source: MFA - Mitchell Feldman Associates

(New York, NY - February 28, 2007) Savant Records announces the March 13th release of new CDs by saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, percussionist Sammy Figueroa and vocalist Pamela Luss. Wayne Escoffery makes an authoritative Savant debut with Veneration (SCD 2081), recorded live in June 2006 at the New York City jazz club Smoke with the 32-year-old saxophonist joined by vibraphonist Joe Locke, bassist Hans Glawischnig and drummer Lewis Nash. A native of London who has lived in ...

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Performance / Tour

Sammy Figueroa at the Jazz Standard, Mon. Feb 19th Sets at 7:30 PM and 9:30 PM

Sammy Figueroa at the Jazz Standard, Mon. Feb 19th Sets at 7:30 PM and 9:30 PM

Source: Jim Eigo, Jazz Promo Services

SAMMY FIGUEROA & HIS LATIN JAZZ EXPLOSION TO DEBUT MUSIC FROM THEIR NEW ALBUM “THE MAGICIAN" on Savant Records JAZZ STANDARD 116 East 27th Street (between Park & Lex) 212 576 2232 http://www.jazzstandard.net MONDAY, FEBRUARY 19TH 2007 7:30 PM 9:30 PM $15 Grammy-nominated percussionist SAMMY FIGUEROA and his LATIN JAZZ EXPLOSION will be performing at New York's distinguished jazz venue, The Jazz Standard, on ...

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Recording

Grammy Nomination for Sammy Figueroa and his Latin Jazz Explosion CD

Grammy Nomination for Sammy Figueroa and his Latin Jazz Explosion CD

Source: All About Jazz

GRAMMY NOMINATION FOR SAMMY FIGUEROA & HIS LATIN JAZZ EXPLOSION'S DEBUT CD, “AND SAMMY WALKED IN" ON SAVANT RECORDS

Legendary percussionist Sammy Figueroa and his band The Latin Jazz Explosion have been nominated for a GRAMMY Award for his debut Savant Records release, “...AND SAMMY WALKED IN", in the Best Latin Jazz Album category. The 48th Annual GRAMMY Awards will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 8, at Staples Center in Los Angeles and will be broadcast live on CBS.

...AND ...

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Photos

Music

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Boarding Pass

Encuentro Music
2024

buy

Saga

Jazz Station Records
2015

buy

Urban Nature

Senators Records
2011

buy

NU-JIVE

Self Produced
2011

buy

Reality Check

String Theory
2007

buy

Boarding Pass (feat Sammy Figueroa)

From: Boarding Pass
By Sammy Figueroa

Flying Waltz

From: Saga
By Sammy Figueroa

Been Down This Road Before

From: Been Down This Road Before
By Sammy Figueroa

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