Vitor Da Trindade is a percussionist, singer and guitarist, teacher of Brazilian dances. He played with the bands Bazar dos Baratos, Réquiem Napalm and Flor do Luar, Banda Kalimba, Cometa Gafi and Maria da Fé, with the dance groups Batacotô, Popular Theater Solano Trindade, Grupo Fuá.
Participated in the films O samba mandou me chamar, of Sérgio Zeigler, with Zezé Mota and Pascoal da Conceição, and Deusa Negra, of Ola Balogun, co-production Brazil and Nigeria, with Jece Valadão and Vera Gimenez. Composed for the bands Semente of Baobá, Duo Baobá, Maria da Fé and Moleque de Rua, and for several theatrical shows.
He gives percussion and Brazilian dance workshops in the Sesc divisions, and in the cultural centers Oswald de Andrade, Alfredo Volpi, Cândido Portinari, Butantã and Itaquera, in the state of São Paulo. Participated in Samba Syndrom 98, 99, 2000, 2001 and 2002, by invitation of the Landesmusik Akademie of Berlin, Germany, where he taught rhythm, songs and Afro-Brazilian dance. In 2001 released the CD Airá Otá with Carlos Caçapava.
Toured in Brazil and Europe with Revista do Samba in 2001 and 2002.
Airto Moreira’s work with Miles Davis during the Bitches Brew era and leadership in the jazz fusion genre (Weather Report, Return To Forever) places Airto in the forefront of percussionists worldwide. Airto’s influence is so powerful that in 1972 Downbeat Magazine added a “percussion” category to its readers’ and critics’ polls, and Airto was voted ‘best’ in that category many times.
Winner of the 1996 Drum Magazine Award for best percussion and Jazz Central Station’s 1996 Best Percussionist Award, Airto keeps on winning fans worldwide. His formidable expertise in Brazilian cultures and percussion instruments make Airto’s performances educational and dazzling.
Airto Guimorva Moreira was born the son of a spiritual healer in the South Brazilian town of Itaiopolis, Santa Catarina, in 1941. His love for music manifested itself at an early age. He was drumming before he could even walk, beating his fists on the floor whenever he heard music with a strong beat on the radio, which prompted his worried mother to take medical advice on his condition. By the time he was six – and winner of numerous music contests – Airto was given his first radio show on Saturday afternoons, which became a big hit in the South Brazilian town of Curitiba.
At 13, Airto sang in the band Jazz Estrela and at 16 he moved to Sao Paulo to further his career as a professional jazz drummer. By 1963, Airto had moved to Rio de Janeiro, where he became an integral part of two of the most successful bands at the time. At the age of 22, he founded the legendary Quarteto Novo (The New Quartet) with Hermeto Pascoal, Theofilo De Barros and Heraldo Do Monte. Mixing Brazilian protest songs with jazz, the band sometimes backed a fiery young vocalist called Flora Purim and – after some initial clashes – she and Airto discovered that they had more in common than music and formed what has proven to be an enduring alliance.
In 1967, at the instigation of his wife and in order to escape the then repressive military regime in Brazil, the couple moved to North America, initially to Los Angeles and then to New York, where Flora worked in a restaurant called Lost & Found. Between paid gigs, Airto would play there for his dinner. Although he could barely speak English, Airto quickly found himself fluent in the universal musical language shared by Reggie Workman, Cedar Walton and bassist Walter Booker (father of Krishna Booker aka The Factor). It was through Booker that Airto began to meet the greats…people like Cannonball Adderley, Lee Morgan and Joe Zawinul.
Zawinul recommended Airto to Miles Davis for a recording session in 1970 and he was soon invited to join the historic ‘electric’ band – perpetrators of the seminal ‘Bitches Brew’. This included such other jazz icons as Wayne Shorter, Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette, Chick Corea, and later, John McLaughlin and Keith Jarrett. Airto remained with the Davis group for two years and appears on several classic Miles’ sets of the era, including Live At The Fillmore and Live/Evil. He shared drumming duties on the first Weather Report album with Alphonse Mouzon, then left to form Return To Forever with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Joe Farrell in late 1971.
Having recorded two classic albums (Return To Forever and Light As A Feather) featuring the vocal pyrotechnics of Flora Purim, Chick Corea then pursued a more electric direction and Airto and Flora went their own way. For the past two decades, the couple have been practically inseparable, touring and recording together constantly.
1991 saw the release of the album Planet Drum, the culmination of a long-standing friendship with Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart, whom he first met when the Miles Davis band opened for The Dead at the Fillmore West in 1970. Planet Drum topped Billboard’s World Music Chart for almost six months and won the first Grammy ever presented in the category of Best World Music Recording. In the same year Airto also won the Grammy for Best Live Jazz Recording for his collaboration with the late Dizzie Gillespie on the album United Nations Orchestra. The following year, Airto again joined forces with Mickey Hart to produce the groundbreaking album of healing music The Other Side Of This.
In 1993 Airto and Flora joined the brilliant guitarist Jose Neto and the keyboards and reeds wizard Gary Meek to form Fourth World, a highly danceable Latin jazz/rock band whose first album (BW030) marked Airto’s first involvement with B&W Music. Also released is Killer Bees (BW041) recorded with a freeform supergroup, The Gods of Jazz, featuring old friends Stanley Clarke, Chick Corea, Mark Egan, Hiram Bullock and Herbie Hancock as well as Flora and Gary Meek. Airto is also the prime mover of the Outernational Meltdown project. With Flora, Jose Neto and others, Airto was integral to Fourth World. The final statement of the group Fourth World is Last Journey to the Fourth World (BW2122).
Although Airto and Flora Purim traveled the world constantly for many years, Airto’s love for the music and the people of his native Brazil takes him back every year to visit old friends and relatives, and to pay respects to his spiritual guides and elders. Airto’s commitment to spiritualism started at an early age and for the past ten years he has been practicing Spiritual Healing Music: the opening of new channels in communication between artists and audience, or in Airto’s words, “creating a true feeling of friendship and enjoyment that is so needed in the world right now”. His lifelong interest in spirituality led him to record The Other Side of This, an exploration into the healing power of music.
Airto continues to explore what he calls ‘Creative Percussion’. In concert, he uses a large table on rolling legs that holds a variety of strange implements. While some of these are actual percussion instruments, other items might be included as a metal rack from a refrigerator, rubber hoses, wooden shoes, springs attached to tin cans, and shakers made from beer cans. He is always on the lookout for anything that can make a unique sound and it is this attitude that will always keep Airto creative and young at heart.
His vocals, unique percussion style and the work of percussionists from other drumming traditions has attracted an audience interested in world music. It would be no exaggeration to say that Airto has influenced the direction of modern jazz worldwide. He has won numerous awards from TV and music magazines and enjoys an unparalleled audience, as a solo artist and with Flora Purim and with his numerous collaborations with artists such as Quincy Jones, Herbie Hancock and Paul Simon. Recently he even and played on MTV Unplugged with The Smashing Pumpkins as well as contributing to movie soundtracks including The Exorcist, The Last Tango in Paris, King of the Gypsies and Apocalypse Now.
Airto has collaborated on numerous projects for M.E.L.T.2000 including the Outernational Meltdown series, Byron Wallen’s albums, the famous Kon’ko Man album by Madala Kunene, Flora Purim’s albums and Jose Neto’s album Neto. With such a wealth of musical experience and creative production of other artists and indigenous music it is not surprising that that his peers look to him as a master and pioneer of percussion.
Airto has produced and been involved in many breakthrough cross-cultural musical projects. Tribal Ethno Dance (BW092) was an opportunity to produce his own interpretation to what were basic field recordings, using simple recording equipment in rural settings. ‘The Wire’ described it as “the real African deal, but with a twist”. Sources came from DZM projects, Khoisan bushmen, the split-tone singers of Ladyfrere and a group of traditional (Sangoma) healers led by Suzan Hendricks.
Revenge of the Killer Bees (ELM8012) is a project that revisits the seminal Airto Moreira and The Gods of Jazz album Killer Bees (BW041) and is a fresh interpretation under the direction of Tony Thorpe and features remixes of Airto’s collaborations with various jazz icons, Millenium style. The spectacular recording Code:Brasil, Target: Recife is the result of Airto’s recent project involving three local bands from Recife, in Northeastern Brazil, representing the various styles and rhythms of that region.
Natural Feelings (Buddah, 1970)
Seeds on the Ground (Buddah, 1971)
Free (CTI, 1972) Fingers (CTI, 1973)
Virgin Land (CTI, 1974)
Promises of the Sun (Arista, 1976) I’m Fine, How Are You? (Warner Music Japan, 1977) Touching You… Touching Me (Warner Music Japan, 1979)
Misa Espiritual (1984)
Three-way Mirror (1985)
Samba De Flora (Montuno, 1988)
Struck by Lightning (Venture, 1989)
Killer Bees (B&W Music, 1989) The Other Side of This (Rykodisc, 1992)
Revenge of the Killer Bees, remix of Killer Bees (Electric Melt, 1993)
Homeless (MELT 2000, 1999)
Life After That (2003)
Aluê (Selo Sesc, 2017)
Ariane De Bievre plays flutes and percussion. She studied classical flute and also mastered the bansuri (Indian flute). She is also a skilled percussionist. She plays bodhran, bendir, daf and other instruments.
Ariane has performed with Julos Beaucame, Satya, Karo-Trio-Flute, Ten Strings, Univers Zero and Galician Celtic band Camaxe.
I feel that each musician has their own personality that goes hand in hand with the instrument they play; I also feel each musician has a friend that they are attracted to, based on personality, charisma and charm.
With a charismatic personality, Tito Puente, the legend of the timbales drums, composer and Latin orchestra leader, had his best friend: Joe Conzo Sr. from New York.
Joe Conzo is an encyclopedia, with his friendship and grand knowledge of Tito Puente: events, recordings and so much more. He is the author of a book about Tito Puente entitled Mambo Diablo.
Joe Conzo is also giving lectures at Hostos College in the Bronx, New York. The lectures and studies on Tito Puente and Latin musician legends of the past intend to make the students and public aware of these musical legacies.
…and let’s see what Joe Conzo Sr. has to say.
Well, Joe, talk to me a little bit about your background.
Joe: I am of Puerto Rican mother and Italian father. I was born and raised in Spanish Harlem. I had 1 brother, who recently passed and I have 2 sisters.
Joe how was it that you got involved in Latin music?
Joe: Latin music was in my family, in going to candy stores as a kid, walking down the street. Home was always where Latin music was played. There were two types of Latin music, there was the Le lo lai, or country Puerto Rican and Cuban music, and there was the swinging stuff that they would play at the Palladium and at Park Palace.
There was Park Plaza and there was Park Place, both at the same location, one upstairs and one downstairs that was the place to be! It was located on 110th Street, off 5th Avenue. It is a church today.
(Joe was naming all the bands that used to play there, Noro Morales, Tito Puente etc and he said all the musician would congregate and talk on the corner, you would see them all out there, talking on the corner).
Joe how was it that you met Tito Puente?
Joe: I met Tito Puente in the Palladium in 1959. I ran into him, and I also went to see him. I was a frustrated conga player. Tito Puente’s music was unbelievable. I bought one of his albums for 75 cents; it was Cuban Carnival.
I really resent the word “salsa” like Tito Puente did, (it was a catch promotional word to promote the new movement of salsa music, evolving from the mambo era.)
(Joe Conzo told me that Jerry Masucci coined the word for his Fania label. I told Joe that the first time I heard the term “Salsa” was in 1973 when I was a young 15 year old FM radio DJ at the University. One of the secretaries at Tico Records, Diana Monge, used to send newsletters from Tico Records, which later became Fania Records. “In the same building,” Joe says and I agree. The newsletter sent out to the disc jockeys was called “Salsa Dice”.)
Joe, if Tito came over to your house to visit you on an evening or such, what would Tito talk about, or what would you and Tito discuss? First of all what was Tito’s favorite drink?
Joe: Tito’s favorite drink was vodka and cranberry. If Tito came over, we would talk about anything, no set topic, just everyday things. Tito did not talk about politics, he played for 4 presidents, 2 Republicans and 2 Democrats. (Joe goes on naming the presidents, but Tito despised politicians).
What did Tito think of his band members?
Joe: Well, we would have band talk, discuss expenses, maybe cutting down the band. You know Tito had 14 mouths to feed, (laughs out loud, discussing band members), sometimes he had to cut down the band. it is hard to travel with a big band, maybe they would call some horn players and musicians on the west coast etc, to cut down band expenses.
Tito would not convert to one thing (or type of band). Tito was not afraid of competition; he was not afraid to branch out and not afraid to challenge things.
Tito did what he had to do to stay on the top, and they could not pay him to play every week in one place, although he did one time.
Tito had a mindset to improve his band, he was always writing (arranging) things and trying new things.
Joe, are you working on a new book? I heard it was about, “The Big 3”, Machito, Tito Puente and Tito Rodriguez.
Joe: I started the book. You know that the Puente book I wrote took me 2 to 3 years to write.
Well what does the future of Joe Conzo bring?
Joe: I have been lecturing at Hostos College and I will continue that. (Joe went on to tell me that Tito Puente wrote over 700 tunes and about the thousands of recording he has of Tito Puente and some live recordings of Tito Puente and also about some albums that he produced. Joe mentioned that he knew Morris Levy, the owner of Tico Records, and he stated that when folks in the studio hear that they are really impressed, due to Levy being a recording legend and owner of Birdland).
I will continue to doing the lecture series and see what life brings.
Thank you, Joe Conzo Sr., for your time and vast knowledge on the subject of Tito Puente and Latin Music. I appreciate your support for Latin Music and your support of my Facebook Percussion Site Timbales and Congas Bongo Bata and Bells, along with my son Marco Moncada.
Joe Conzo asked me why I was posting vintage pictures on my Timbales and Congas site, telling me that only he and bongosero John Rodriguez could identify the musicians in the pics, laughing that I was making him think.
Michael Spiro & Joe Galvin – Bákini: En el Nuevo Mundo (Iu Music, 2017)
Bakini: En el Nuevo Mundo is a celebration of Afro-Latin percussion performed by the acclaimed Afro-Cuban Folkloric Ensemble that came out of the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.
Produced by percussionists Michael Spiro and Joe Galvin, Bákini: En el Nuevo Mundo is a fabulous introduction to the marvelous world of Afro-Cuban folkloric percussion. However, the ensemble goes beyond Cuba by incorporating Brazilian musical forms, Caribbean calypso, strings, brass and percussion instruments from other regions of the world.
Bákini: En el Nuevo Mundo is divided into three suites. The first one, Aganyú suite, combines Afro-Cuban religious music and secular sounds. The lead singer (akpuón) is Jesús Diaz.
Macarambique Suite mixes Brazilian maracatú with a relatively modern Cuban rhythm called Mozambique and celebrates carnaval (carnival) festivities throughout the Americas.
The final set is “Oyá Suite,” another Afro-Cuban inspired piece with some unexpected innovations like a Brazilian samba battery. The akpuón here is Michael Mixtatacki.
The CD booklet includes extensive information about the artists, musical forms, instruments used and the development of the suites. It also contains a glossary.
The personnel that participated in Bákini includes Michael Spiro on iyá (batá drum), caja, quinto and other percussion instrument; Joe Galvin on okónkolo (batá drum), vocals, steelpan, chequeré (shaker) and vocals; Kristin Olson on itótele (batá drum), vocals and keyboard percussion; Jesús Diaz on quinto and lead vocals; Michael Mixtacki on chequeré; Scott Ketner on percussion; Eli Edelman on yonofó drum, caja and various other percussion instruments; Andy Miller on timbal; Ben Christensen on vocals; Jen Bollero on vocals, Fabiana Masili on vocals; Liliana Araujo on vocals; Brenna Johns on trombone; Alex Dura on saxophone; Mitchell Shiner on vibraphone; Jeremy Allen on double bass; Marco Núñez on flute; Daniel Stein on violin; Clara Scholtes on violin; Rose Wollman on viola; Leonardo Vásquez on viola and Chris Cho on cello.
Flamenco percussionist Manuel Flores was born in Morón de la Frontera, Spain in 1969. Considered one of the masters of hand rhythm (compas) from Moron he has participated in the Bienal de Flamenco and the Feria Mundial de Flamenco. For many years Flores was the rhythmic “anchor” for singers and dancers such as Chano Lobato, Andorrano, Kiko Veneno, Juan de Juan, Nano de Jerez, Rafael de Utrera and Javier Ruibal and guitarists Paco del Gastor, Diego de Moron, Juan del Gastor, El Leri, and Eduardo Rebollar.
Outside of Spain he has been involved in flamenco performances in the United Arab Emirates, Italy, Switzerland, Portugal, the United States, France and Belgium. In 1998 Manuel Flores began to collaborate with Martirio. He soon became an integral part of her flamenco group and performed on her album Mucho Corazon subsequently touring with her in 2003 and 2004.
Glen Velez is a master drummer, composer and educator. He won three Grammy awards and is considered one of the most influential percussionists of our time, as well as being responsible for a world-wide resurgence in the popularity of the frame drum.
He was born in Texas, of Mexican American ancestry. He moved to New York City in the late 196s. Although he began as a jazz drummer, he felt a strong attraction towards hand drums, especially frame drums.
Glen has also gained international recognition as a solo artist and is also known for his 15 year recording and performing collaborations with composer Steve Reich, as well as the Paul Winter Consort.
His teaching and performances inspired the Remo Drum Co. in 1983 to develop a line of frame drums called the Glen Velez signature Series. The Cooperman Drum Co. introduced a hand made Signature Series Glen Velez Tambourine and Frame Drum line in 1999.
In 1989, twentieth century composer, John Cage acknowledged Velez’ mastery when he wrote a piece especially for him, entitled “Composed Improvisation for One-sided Drum with or without Jingles.”
Other collaborations include: Tan Dun, Israel Philharmonia, Brooklyn Philharmonia, Opera Orchestra of New York, Suzanne Vega Pat Metheny Zakir Hussain, New York City Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Orpheus Chamber Ensemble.
His own compositions have been featured on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered and John Schaefer’s New Sounds and have been commissioned by the Rockefeller Foundation, Jerome Foundation, and Reader’s Digest. He has written music for theater and dance and recorded hundreds of albums on ECM, CBS, RCA, GRP, Warner Brothers, Deutsche Gramophone, Geffen, Nonesuch, Capital, and Sony.
Glen has several instructional videos, 5 instructional books and over a dozen recordings of his own music on CMP, Music of the World, Sounds True, Interworld, Ellipsis Arts and DafTof Records. Glen is a master teacher who conducts workshops worldwide and has published numerous books and articles on the subject.
Velez developed his own teaching approach called The Handance Method. It incorporates voice and body movement into the process of learning to play the frame drum and has been presented in hundreds of universities worldwide. He currently teaches frame drums at the Mannes School of Music, as well as series of master classes at The Julliard School and Manhattan School of Music.
While Glen draws upon the great drumming traditions of the Middle East, South India and the Mediterranean world (ancient and modern), he plays in a style all his own. Utilizing a vast culmination of complex hand and finger techniques, a symphony of sounds and textures remarkably stream forth from just a single hand held drum. Glen’s solos seem supernatural, a technical rarity that is beyond comprehension. However, beyond all the jaw-dropping spectacle of Glen’s super-human techniques, is a music that is so deeply emotional, a raw beauty, that perhaps, within it’s core, resides the most universal rhythm of all – the heart beat.
Glen is also an expert in Central Asian Overtone Singing (split-tone/harmonic singing). During concerts, he often gives his audiences a spontaneous crash course in this style, thus resulting into a spirited interactive overtone choir.
Glen Velez regularly performs and records with Trio Globo – featuring Eugene Friesen and Howard Levy; Coleman Barkes, world renown scholar/translator of the poetry of Rumi; Glen Velez Ensemble; Duo performances with vocalist/rhythm singer Lori Cotler – songs from their new recording are available on iTunes.
Handdance (Music of the World, 1983)
Musica Esporadica (Nocd Records, 1985)
Internal Combustion (Schematic, 1985)
Seven Heaven (CMP, 1987)
Assyrian Rose (CMP, 1989)
Doctrine of Signatures (CMP, 1991)
Ramana (Nomad Records/Music of the World, 1991)
Mokave 2 (Audioquest, 1993)
Border States (1993)
Pan Eros (CMP, 1993)
Trio Globo, with Trio Globo (Silver Wave, 1994)
Carnival of Souls, with Trio Globo (Silver Wave, 1995)
Rhythmcolor Exotica (Ellipsis Arts, 1996)
Rhythms of the Chakras (Sounds True, 1998)
Ettna (Nomad Records/Music of the World, 1999)
Breathing Rhythms (Sounds True, 2000)
Rhythms of Awakening (Sounds True, 2005)
Rhythms of the Chakras 2 (Sounds True, 2008)
Steering by the Stars, with Trio Globo (Stonecutter Records, 2010)
Innovative Granada-based Brazilian percussionist Rubem Dantas is set to perform in Seville, Spain as part of his Cajon Tour. The concert will take place Tuesday, May 9th at Teatro Central. Acclaimed singer La Susi will appear as guest artist.
Rubem Dantas introduced the Peruvian cajón to flamenco nearly 40 years ago, as part of Paco de Lucía’s band. Since then, the cajón has become a regular instrument in most flamenco ensembles.
Dantas will be presenting pieces from his most recent solo album Festejo along with covers of composiitons by Paco de Lucía, Camarón de la Isla, La Susi, Vinícius de Moraes, José Fernández and Justo Heredia.
The lineup includes Rubem Dantas (percusssion), Saray Fernández La Pitita (dance), Justo Heredia Malaguita (vocals), Joaquín Sánchez (clarinet and harmonica), José María Pedraza Petaca (piano), José Fernández Petete (flamenco guitar) and La Susi (vocals).
Terje Isungset was born in 1964. He is regarded as one of the most creative, uncompromising and distinctive percussionists in Norway. He has spent many years developing his own unique mode expression, crafted instruments himself, using materials found in natural surroundings.
Isungset performs throughout the year with various bands from Norway and other European countries, including Swedish band Groupa.
Isungset has made a major contribution on various folk music CDs. The many years he has spent working to create a genuine, rhythmic dimension in his music have enabled him to develop a distinctly individual musical identity built on Norwegian sounds.
In additional to conventional percussion, Isungset has experimented and performed with glass and ice percussion instruments, ice horns and other creations.
Orleysa (Odin NJ 4039-2, 1991)
Rom, with Isglem (NOR-CD 9102, 1991)
To steg, with Isglem (NOR-CD 9204, 1992)
Juv Utla (NOR-CD 9309, 1993)
Svanshornet, with Orleysa (Odin NJ 4048-2, 1993)
Rit, with Karl Seglem (NOR-CD 9410, 1994)
Haugtussa, with Lynni Treekrem and Ketil Bjornstad (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 159, 1995)
Brodd, with Utla (NOR-CD 9514, 1995)
Okuta Percussion (Osika Eucd 1343, 1996)
Null g, with Isglem (NOR-CD 9615, 1996)
Tya, with Reidar Sk?r and Karl Seglem (NOR-CD 9717, 1997)
Reise (NOR-CD 9724, 1997)
Trad, with Niss Kerstin Hallgren (Amigo AMCD 739, 1998)
Spir, with Karl Seglem (NOR-CD 9830, 1998)
Jol, with Hans Fredrik Jacobsen (Via Music VCD 375, 1998)
Lavalek, with Groupa (Xoucd 125, 1999)
Dans, with Utla (NOR-CD 9935, 1999)
Bergtatt, with Oslo Chamber Choir (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 214, 1999)