TRUMPETER PETE RODRIGUEZ, SON OF THE LEGENDARY “EL CONDE” RETURNS TO THE SACRED GROUND OF THE OLD VILLAGE GATE WHERE HE OFTEN PERFORMED AT “MONDAY NIGHTS SALSA MEETS JAZZ” **ONE NIGHT ONLY** AT (LE) POISSON ROUGE WITH ALL-STAR BAND AT 10PM – featuring LUIS PERDOMO (piano), RICKY RODRIGUEZ (bass), RUDY ROYSTON (drums) & ROBERT QUINTERO (percussion)
CONTINUING A FAMILY TRADITION OF PUSHING THE ENVELOPE DESTINY RECORDS’ DEBUT ALBUM + NYC CELEBRATION FOR “CAMINANDO CON PAPI”
Trumpeter, vocalist and percussionist Pete Rodríguez carries the bloodline of Nuyorican salsa, just as he takes the tradition of Afro-Cuban jazz to new places. The son of renowned salsero Pete “El Conde” Rodríguez and godson of Fania Records bandleader Johnny Pacheco, the younger Rodríguez revisits his father’s legacy on Caminando con Papi. Rodriguez sang on Tito Puente’s Grammy-award winning Mambo Birdland; as an instrumentalist, he’s appeared with legends including Celia Cruz, Eddie Palmieri, Chico O’Farrill and Bebo Valdez. On Wednesday, January 29th at 10pm, he will make a welcome comeback with his all-star Quintet, to the sacred ground of the old Village Gate, where he often played “Monday Nights Salsa Meets Jazz” – now LE POISSON ROUGE – for an all-star evening celebrating his latest Destiny Records release, CAMINANDO CON PAPI, his third album as bandleader featuring LUIS PERDOMO (piano), RICKY RODRIGUEZ (bass), RUDY ROYSTON (drums) & ROBERT QUINTERO (percussion). LPR is located at 158 Bleecker Street, 212-505-FISH, www.lepoissonrouge.com. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 day of show.
The idea of saluting “El Conde” had been on Rodríguez’s mind since his father’s death in 2000, but he had been unable to move forward with the project until recently. “Our relationship went beyond father/son, we were more like brothers, as well as co-workers,” says Rodríguez, who became his father’s musical director at the age of 19. Coached by pianist Oscar Hernandez, the former director for “El Conde” and Ruben Blades, Rodríguez was playing trumpet, singing coro, playing maracas and giving cues to the band. He also served as his father’s travelling companion and manager when his mother was no longer able to fly. “When Papi passed away, I didn’t know what to do. I quit playing horn for three years, and I couldn’t listen to his music, especially while I was driving. It would feel like he’d be in the car with me; it was emotionally overwhelming.”
Rodríguez’s connection to his father, and the importance of his family, is obvious from the opening re-arrangement of Blades’ “Tambo,” one of his father’s signature songs. Originally an up tempo guaguancó, Rodríguez has put the lyrics at the forefront, with modern harmonies, a slower tempo, and a form stripped of the salsa signifiers of mambo and coro. “Tambo” opens with Rodríguez’s four-year-old daughter, Nayeli, paying homage to her abuelito before giving way to Rodríguez’s delicate and intimate delivery. The other vocal feature is Perdomo’s equally creative arrangement of Tite Curet’s “Cabildo.”
This contemporary sound of Latin jazz is a commonality among Rodríguez’s Puerto Rican jazz peers. Rodríguez was a high school classmate of saxophonist Davíd Sanchez at the Escuela Libre de Música in San Juan, PR, where Miguel Zenón would follow a few years later. While Rodríguez was a classical trumpet major, Sanchez was already well on his jazz trajectory and got Rodríguez into practicing the Charlie Parker Omnibook. Through practicing alongside Sanchez, saxophonists serve as a bigger influence on Rodríguez’s sound, as evidenced by the rapid-fire lines of “El Camaleón” and the introduction to “Arlene,” and Rodríguez’s penchant for the low and middle registers of his horn.
The legacy of Pete “El Conde” Rodríguez continues in his son, primarily in the quest to grow artistically. “Even the week before Papi died, he was listening to himself and to Beny Moré to perfect his craft,” Rodríguez remembers. “He always thought, ‘I can sing these tunes better.’ I think of him as the Miles Davis of Latin music.”
HEAR WHAT THE CRITICS ARE SAYING:
“As a teacher, it’s always gratifying to know that former students are making a contribution to their field. Such is the case with Pete Rodriguez. He possesses a full rich sound on both trumpet and flugelhorn and his technique is incredible. It is as a composer that his development is even more amazing. The melodies he writes are full of complex, quirky rhythms, making unusual dips and turns. I, for one, look forward to many more musical statements from this evolving young artist.”- KENNY BARRON
“Rodriguez has got a sound and drive that any fan of Freddie Hubbard or Clifford Brown is going to love.” – GEORGE W. HARRIS, JAZZ WEEKLY
“A rich musicality and aplomb” – RAFAEL VEGA CURRY, EL NUEVO DIA
“A deep, resonant tone…luscious horn melodies…” – THE VANCOUVER SUN
“A major talent with stately playing, writing and arranging skills” – AUDIOPHILE AUDITION
“Not only is this one of the best jazz albums of the year, it’s one of the best albums in any style of music released in 2013.” – Lucid Culture
“Following in the footsteps of his legendary salsero father, Rodriguez utilizes the lessons he’s learned to create a sound all his own….. Pete Rodriguez brings his life full circle with ‘Caminando con Papi,’ which pays homage to his late father ‘El Conde’ and opens with the voice of his 4-year-old daughter Nayeli.” – NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
“Pete Rodriguez delicately combines/unites Cuban music and jazz in the masterpiece celebration of good music that every connoisseur and collector must be sure to buy.” – solarlatinclub.com
“Deep and profound music that conjures up the sound of Miles Davis and Freddie Hubbard, with touches of free jazz. It’s intense…challenging material that doesn’t get in the way, by some of the heaviest musicians in New York who come from a Latin background but are more than capable of playing American jazz at the highest levels. Only a handful of people in that school…Historic stuff.” – Peter Watrous, Descarga.com
Dizzy, Chano and Chico – The Original Influencers 75 Years Later at Town Hall
[New York] – The Afro Latin Jazz Alliance & The Town Hall Present: Dizzy, Chano and Chico — The Original Influencers — 75 Years Later at Town Hall. A celebration of the monumental moments when jazz met the rhythms of Cuba and changed the face of modern music forever. In 1947, legends Dizzy Gillespie and Chano Pozo composed “Manteca” — one of the earliest foundational compositions of Afro-Cuban jazz and among Gillespie’s most famous recordings. In December ’47, Dizzy and Chano performed it live at the famed Town Hall in New York City. Consecutively, composer Chico O’Farrill’s masterpiece “Afro Cuban Jazz Suite” brought together bandleader Machito with O’Farrill and Charlie Parker, among others. O’Farrill’s work to meld modern jazz with Cuban big band continued with his collaboration with Dizzy on “The Manteca Suite.” ALJA and Town Hall celebrate Dizzy, Chano and Chico for their groundbreaking introduction of Latin music influences in jazz.
On January 14, 2023 at Town Hall, the continuum pushes forward 75 years later with the next generation of performers keeping Afro Cuban/Afro Latin jazz alive and well. Multi-GRAMMY Award-winning Arturo O’Farrill and his 18-piece Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra revisit the acclaimed compositions “Manteca,” “The Manteca Suite,” and “Afro Cuban Jazz Suite” as well as new compositions, arrangements and recent works with some of today’s most distinguished Latin jazz artists. Featured guests include “Superstar of Afro Cuban Percussion” Pedrito Martinez, NEA Jazz Master saxophonist Big Chief Donald Harrison, Cuban vocalist Daymé Arocena, trumpeter Jon Faddis, as well as emerging talents trumpeter Adam O’Farrill, percussionist Jacquelene Acevedo, and singer/composer Melvis Santa.
This event is part of the on-going centennial celebrations of both Chico O’Farrill and the Town Hall.
Arturo O’Farrill & The Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra
Featuring: Pedrito Martinez, Big Chief Donald Harrison, Jon Faddis, Daymé Arocena
With: Adam O’Farrill, Jacquelene Acevedo, Melvis Santa
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