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Musician

Mauricio Herrera

Mauricio Herrera is one of the leading percussionists on New York’s Afro-Cuban jazz scene. He’s collaborated with some of the best jazz musicians of our time, including Stefon Harris, Nicholas Payton, David Sanchez, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Christian Scott, and Yosvany Terry. But his connections to the sacred roots of Afro-Cuban music run deep, and he masterfully fuses traditional forms and techniques with an adventurous, wide-open approach. Growing up in the eastern province of Holguin, Cuba, Maruicio was exposed to the deep traditions of sacred and ritual music. His family is very musical, and at age 7 he started on violin, but by 14 began studying percussion, where he found his niche

Album

Plena

Label: Truth Revolution Records
Released: 2021
Track listing: And So It Goes; Summer Of Love and Discontent; Superspreader; Plena; Invernadero; Soul Cha; Exotic Particles; Rain Song.

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Article: Album Review

Michael Eckroth Group: Plena

Read "Plena" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


Michael Eckroth had clear goals in mind for this project--"to create music that was lyrical, modern, true to its Afro-Latin roots, but never purist in its approach"--and he's accomplished his mission with gusto. Through Plena, this Grammy-nominated pianist/composer delivers a program of original music that, while acknowledging folkloric traditions, doesn't buy into their formal strictures and ...

Album

Inside Rhythmic Falls

Label: Intakt Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Lucero Mundo; Conversation with the Oaks; Marímbula's Mood; Golden Voice (Changüi); De Cantos y Ñáñigos; Inside Rhythmic Falls. Part I (Sacred Codes); Argelier's Disciple; Inside Rhythmic Falls. Part II (Echoes); El Ashé de la Palabra; Para ti Nengón.

Album

Diluvio

Label: Origin Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Fast Eye; Cremant; Tempest Dance; Herr Jesu Christ, wahr' Mensch und Gott, BWV 127: Aria; The Drifter's Plan; Mixology; Into the Clear; Line for Lyons; Impressions.

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Article: Year in Review

Karl Ackermann’s Best Releases of 2020

Read "Karl Ackermann’s Best Releases of 2020" reviewed by Karl Ackermann


2020 abridged: A staggering loss of lives and livelihoods. We had worldwide social unrest, wildfires, locust swarms of Biblical proportions, killer hornets, killer drones, kids in cages; an impeachment, an election, an attempted insurrection. Oh, and Poland accidentally invaded the Czech Republic. It was not exactly the Gilded Age. Yet, amid doom-scrolling, the creative music community ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Eric Revis, Art Blakey, Federico Calcagno, Charles Tolliver & More

Read "Eric Revis, Art Blakey, Federico Calcagno, Charles Tolliver & More" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu


Recently unearthed gems by Dudu Pukwana and Art Blakey, beautiful new albums by Eric Revis and Charles Tolliver, the Cuban roots of David Virelles and Aruán Ortiz, a peak in the jny: Amsterdam and jny: Berlin scenes through the music of Federico Calcagno and Reza Askari, respectively, and much more in this week's edition of Mondo ...

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Article: Album Review

Robby Ameen: Diluvio

Read "Diluvio" reviewed by Jack Bowers


It's a given that wherever Grammy-winning drummer Robby Ameen goes, irrepressible rhythm is sure to follow. Diluvio, Ameen's third album as leader of his own ensemble, is clearly no exception to the rule. Ameen's half-dozen compositions are intrepid and lively, and even Gerry Mulligan's “Line for Lyons" and John Coltrane's “Impressions," which seal the album, are ...

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Article: Album Review

Aruán Ortiz with Andrew Cyrille & Mauricio Herrera: Inside Rhythmic Falls

Read "Inside Rhythmic Falls" reviewed by John Sharpe


Cuban pianist Aruan Ortiz' fifth release for the Swiss Intakt label sits midway between his solo Cub(an)ism (2017) and dates by his Trio such as Live In Zurich (2018). In spite of the title, while there is a greater rhythmic impulse than on the unaccompanied session, the interaction largely pulls back from the intoxicating momentum of ...

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Article: Album Review

Robby Ameen: Diluvio

Read "Diluvio" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


Perhaps it's a flood of rhythm that the title and cover art refer to on this third leader outing from drumming dynamo Robby Ameen. A heavy hitter in Afro-Cuban circles for decades, Ameen's frangible linear Latin funk workouts, intricate rhythmic roadmapping, song-serving chops and good taste have earned him an overwhelmingly positive reputation. Everybody from musical ...


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