Articles

Daily articles carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. Read our popular and future articles.

ALBUM REVIEW

Dafnis Prieto Sextet: Transparency

Read "Transparency" reviewed by John Chacona

In Cuban music, emotional grandeur and extravagant virtuosity is built on a foundation of inexhaustible rhythm. So, it's no surprise to find an abundance of juicy melodies and breathtaking drumming on Transparency from drummer and MacArthur “Genius" Fellow Dafnis Prieto. Yet for all the astonishing things he does behind the kit, what stands out on Transparency is the dazzling formal sophistication of Prieto's compositions. Eight of the nine composer credits are his and the outlier, an arrangement of ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Dafnis Prieto Big Band: Back to the Sunset

Read "Back to the Sunset" reviewed by Troy Dostert

The astonishingly talented and prolific drummer Dafnis Prieto has done a lot since moving to the States from his native Cuba in 1999. He's made a host of sideman appearances with musicians of widely varying stripes, including Peter Apfelbaum, Michel Camilo, Steve Coleman, Marilyn Lerner, Brian Lynch, Henry Threadgill, Chucho Valdés, and John Zorn. He won a MacArthur “genius" grant in 2011. He published an influential instructional guide, A World of Rhythmic Possibilities, in 2016. And he's recorded a significant ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Dafnis Prieto Big Band: Back to the Sunset

Read "Back to the Sunset" reviewed by Jack Bowers

The alliance of Latin music and American jazz ripened on these shores more than seventy years ago, nourished by pioneers such as Mario Bauza, Chano Pozo, Dizzy Gillespie, Machito, Tito Puente and others. It has been carried forward and enhanced since then by a succession of remarkable innovators including in recent years the Cuban-born drummer Dafnis Prieto who has chosen on his seventh recording as leader to honor a number of his forebears and musical heroes in a big-band format. ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Dafnis Prieto: Back to the Sunset

Read "Back to the Sunset" reviewed by Patrick Burnette

Back to the Sunset, the new album by the Dafnis Prieto Big Band opens with “Una Vez Mas," a fairly traditional Latin big band workout. Don't let that fool you--this is not your padre's Latin jazz album. Half way through the decidedly more mysterioso second track, “The Sooner the Better," it's amply apparent that Prieto is willing to explore by-ways ignored by genre traditionalists. The result is a challenging album that requires attentive listening if its pleasures are to be ...

INTERVIEW

Dafnis Prieto: Cross-Cultural Mix

Read "Dafnis Prieto: Cross-Cultural Mix" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

Dafnis Prieto is one of the leading drummers and composers of his generation. Forty-four years old and Cuban born, Prieto moved to jny: New York City in 1999. The early 2000's found Prieto employed as a sideman by several prominent musicians, including Eddie Palmieri, Michel Camilo, Carlos Barbosa-Lima, Dave Samuels and Arturo O'Farrill. In the following years Prieto also appeared in some avant-garde settings with Henry Threadgill and Steve Coleman. The young Cuban drummer transposes elements from his Afro-Cuban musical ...

BOOK REVIEW

Dafnis Prieto: A World Of Rhythmic Possibilities

Read "Dafnis Prieto: A World Of Rhythmic Possibilities" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

A World Of Rhythmic Possibilites Dafnis Prieto 276 Pages ISBN: #978-0-692-65526-9 Dafnison Music 2016 Learning to fluently and fluidly dissect, construct, and speak rhythms through the drums is a lifelong process of study, discovery, and growth. Touching on the new while truly expanding that coded language is incredibly difficult to do, and having the wherewithal and communicative skills to actually breakdown those expansions is as rare as can be. But clearly nobody ...

INTERVIEW

Dafnis Prieto: Experiments in Spontaneity

Read "Dafnis Prieto: Experiments in Spontaneity" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke

Improvisation--music in the moment, eloquently once called “the sound of surprise"--takes place in genres besides jazz. But in America's indigenous art form, it is a cornerstone. The degree to which a song might contain improv varies greatly. Sometimes it's hard to tell in a highly arranged piece where the musicians are taking liberties. Other times its obvious an elongated solo is being composed on the spot.Consider the idea of a band that's pretty much making everything up on ...


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