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Musician

Celia Cruz

Born:

Beloved as the undisputed Queen of Salsa, Celia Cruz had a remarkable six-decade career, with more than 70 records, two Grammy awards, and three Latin Grammys, among numerous other accolades, to her credit.  Cruz, who sang only in her native Spanish language,also received a Smithsonian Lifetime Achievement award, and a National Medal of the Arts for her contributions to Latin music and culture. Celia Cruz began singing in amateur contests at the age of 14, in her home city of Havana, Cuba. She studied music theory, piano and voice at the National Music Conservatory. In 1950 she began singing with the conjunto Sonora Matancera, and with that group she was a central figure in some of the most glorious chapters of Afrocuban music, recording a number of legendary songs, including "Yembe Laroco," "Yerbero Moderno," "Burundanga," and "Caramelo." By the end of the '50s the Sonora Matancera was the most popular group in Cuba

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Article: The Revolution Will NOT Be Televised

Gil Scott-Heron: Paean To The Spirit Of One Of The Last Poets

Read "Gil Scott-Heron: Paean To The Spirit Of One Of The Last Poets" reviewed by William H. Snyder


IntroductionWhat does it take to be a griot? According to the dictionary, griots are a 'member of a hereditary caste among the peoples of western Africa whose function is to keep an oral history of the tribe or village and to entertain with stories, poems, songs, dances, etc.' Gil Scott-Heron did not grow up in West ...

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Article: Album Review

Noah Bless: New York Strong—Latin Jazz!

Read "New York Strong—Latin Jazz!" reviewed by Jack Bowers


When it comes to Latin jazz, trombonist Noah Bless is no novice, having gigged in and around New York City for the better part of three decades with such Latin stars as Paquito D'Rivera, Mario Bauza, Oscar D'Leon, Celia Cruz, Willie Colon and Eddie Palmieri, and sat in with the Lincoln Center Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra and ...

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Article: Take Five With...

Take Five with Maureen Choi

Read "Take Five with Maureen Choi" reviewed by Maureen Choi


Meet Maureen Choi Now residing in Spain, this Korean-American violinist is sparkling a revolution in the improvised music scene in Spain. Her band Maureen Choi Quartet is creating a sound that they describe as, “Spanish Chamber Jazz." After winning several international violin competitions starting at age five, Maureen has performed as a soloist across ...

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Article: Catching Up With

Miguel Zenon Celebrates Sonero!

Read "Miguel Zenon Celebrates Sonero!" reviewed by Corey Hall


As the song's lyrics about freedom were sung, the child's conscience consumed them whole. This child, ten years young at the time, had never heard the singer, Ismael Rivera, or the song, “Las Tumbas," before, but, three decades later, this initial impression remains in Miguel Zenon's memory. “I was taken by the song's overall ...

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Article: Live Review

Hilario Durán At Telus Centre

Read "Hilario Durán At Telus Centre" reviewed by Alain Londes


Hilario Durán and his Latin Jazz Big BandTelus Centre for Performance and LearningToronto, Canada February 9, 2019A “dream concert" is how Hilario Durán characterized the show featuring his Latin Jazz Big Band and the great drummer Horacio “El Negro" Hernández. Cuban-born piano great Durán settled in Canada in the mid-nineties and ...

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Article: Musician 2 Musician

The Cry of Jay Rodriguez

Read "The Cry of Jay Rodriguez" reviewed by Michael Blake


On an unseasonably warm February evening I set out from Brooklyn to catch the multi-instrumentalist Jay Rodriguez's band at Le Poisson Rouge. While walking from the West 4th Street subway station to the venue on Bleecker Street I recalled taking this exact route over 30 years ago to play a jam session in the ...

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Article: In Pictures

Sunday at the Monterey Jazz Festival

Read "Sunday at the Monterey Jazz Festival" reviewed by Dave Kaufman


Friday | Saturday | Sunday Sunday was a spectacularly beautiful day in Monterey which was just perfect for the 12-hour marathon of music. The closing day of the Jazz Festival included a stellar lineup of great jazz artists including Joe Lovano, Vijay Iyer, Linda May Han Oh, Brad Mehldau, Regina Carter and the closing ...

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Article: Live Review

Impressions of Monterey Jazz Festival 2017: MJF At 60

Read "Impressions of Monterey Jazz Festival 2017: MJF At 60" reviewed by Walter Atkins


Monterey Jazz Festival Monterey County Fairgrounds Monterey, CA September 15-17, 2017 The 60th edition of the long running Monterey Jazz Festival 2017 was well received. This year boldly continued the MJF's opulent tradition of presenting a special blend of fantastic jazz and other music genres in a casual ...

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Article: Album Review

Steve Sandberg Quartet: Alaya

Read "Alaya" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


The best word to sum up pianist Steve Sandberg's work is expansive. If his own performance history doesn't make that point clearly enough--he's hobnobbed with Brazilian music royalty like the Gilberto clan, made his mark on the salsa world by working with artists like Ruben Blades and Celia Cruz, touched down time and again in the ...


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