Event List Calendar

An Evening with Sarah McKenzie

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)

Image of Sarah McKenzie

After the great success of Sarah McKenzie’s 2017 disc, “Paris in the Rain” (Impulse! Records), the 31-year-old pianist, singer, and composer returns with the poignant, “Secrets of My Heart”. The former disc opened more opportunities for her to perform around the world in such far away places as Brazil, Korea, Japan, and also established her in the United States. Its title song became one of her signature tunes and is one of the highlights of her live shows.

While embarking on her music career, being so far away from her family in Australia tore her. Sometimes, she contemplated abandoning music for the security of being with her family. “I went through a big coming-of-age process because I had to really decide how much I love this dream versus how much I love being with my family,” she explains. “How much am I prepared to sacrifice for my dream as a professional musician? And is it OK to follow that dream? And is this constant traveling the dream itself? I had some poignant questions to ask myself since the release of Paris in the Rain. And that process resulted in Secrets of My Heart.”

For “Secrets of My Heart”, she reunites with noted Australian composer, arranger, and events music director, Chong Lim, who produced her first two discs – Don’t Tempt Me and Close Your Eyes. “He’s the guy who introduced me to Wayne Shorter’s Native Dancer and Antonio Carlos Jobim’s Stone Flower. We always had a great connection; he knows me inside and out,” she says.

Recorded in New York City, “Secrets of My Heart” exudes cosmopolitan flair with its lineup that includes French bassist Pierre Boussaguet and Brazilian percussionist Rogerio Bocatto alongside guitarist Dan Wilson, drummer Donald Edwards, vibraphonist Warren Wolf, tenor saxophonist Troy Roberts, and cellist Jody Redhage Ferber (all of whom based in the United States), and a cameo appearance of bossa nova legend Danilo Caymmi on flute on “De Nada“. Secrets of My Heart documents McKenzie’s burgeoning brilliance interpreting 20th-century jazz standards with her penchant for crafting sterling compositions that will surely become jazz standards in the 21st century.

Even though McKenzie hailed from Melbourne and studied at Boston’s Berklee College of Music on a full scholarship, she started her career in Europe, first living in Paris, then London. And while she’s absorbed great harmonic and lyric-writing knowledge from the Great American Songbook, she says that Secrets of My Heart reveals her time spent in Europe, especially from a harmonic standpoint. Her residency in Europe also afforded her the opportunity to sit around the piano with the iconic composer and arranger Michel Legrand. “His style differs from the classic American Songbook standards,” McKenzie says. “Michel is a little bit more lyrical and French; his music is a little bit more Debussy or Ravel-influenced than the classic American Songbook standards. To have been able to spend time with him at the piano was one of the highlights of the year.”

“Secrets of My Heart” opens with McKenzie’s transfixing rendition of John Barry and Leslie Bricusse’s “You Only Live Twice,” which showcases McKenzie’s comely piano soloing as much as it does her alluring singing. She also delivers an exquisite makeover of Stanley Styne and Donald Kahn’s classic “A Beautiful Friendship” and a gutbucket take on Dinah Washington’s “Come on Home.”

She concludes “Secrets of My Heart” with a tour-de-force homage to another hero, George Gershwin with “The Gershwin Medley” an instrumental on which she plays snippets of “Rhapsody in Blue,” “Summertime,” “The Man I Love” and “I Got Rhythm.” “Ultimately, this album is about me embracing the unknown and going with love,” McKenzie explains. “I’m so lucky to be able to play my music for a living.”

Start: June 1, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Cost: 35.00

John Scofield Trio

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)

Image of John Scofield

FEATURING:
John Scofield – Guitar
Steve Swallow – Bass
Bill Stewart – Drums

John Scofield’s guitar work has influenced jazz since the late 70’s and is going strong today. Possessor of a very distinctive sound and stylistic diversity, Scofield is a masterful jazz improviser whose music generally falls somewhere between post-bop, funk edged jazz, and R & B.

Born in Ohio and raised in suburban Connecticut, Scofield took up the guitar at age 11, inspired by both rock and blues players. He attended Berklee College of Music in Boston. After a debut recording with Gerry Mulligan and Chet Baker, Scofield was a member of the Billy Cobham-George Duke band for two years. In 1977 he recorded with Charles Mingus, and joined the Gary Burton quartet. He began his international career as a bandleader and recording artist in 1978. From 1982–1985, Scofield toured and recorded with Miles Davis. His Davis stint placed him firmly in the foreground of jazz consciousness as a player and composer.

Since that time he has prominently led his own groups in the international Jazz scene, recorded over 30 albums as a leader (many already classics) including collaborations with contemporary favorites like Pat Metheny, Charlie Haden, Eddie Harris, Medeski, Martin & Wood, Bill Frisell, Brad Mehldau, Mavis Staples, Government Mule, Jack DeJohnette, Joe Lovano and Phil Lesh. He’s played and recorded with Tony Williams, Jim Hall, Ron Carter, Herbie Hancock, Joe Henderson, Dave Holland, Terumasa Hino among many jazz legends. Throughout his career Scofield has punctuated his traditional jazz offerings with funk-oriented electric music. All along, the guitarist has kept an open musical mind.

Touring the world approximately 200 days per year with his own groups, he is an Adjunct Professor of Music at New York University, a husband, and father of two.

Start: June 2, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Cost: $45.00

Marcus Miller Residency

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)

Photo of Marcus Miller, Marcus Miller Residency, sony presents Blue Note Jazz Festival, Link to Calendar page

Special Projects To Be Announced

Marcus Miller has been dubbed one of the most influential artists of our time. At the top of his game for over 30 years, he is a two-time Grammy award winner, (U.S.), winner of the 2013 Edison Award for Lifetime Achievement In Jazz (Holland), winner of the 2010 Victoire du Jazz (France) and in 2013, was appointed a UNESCO Artist For Peace. His characteristic bass sound can be heard on a limitless catalog of musical hits from Bill Wither’s, to Luther Vandross’ “Never Too Much”, to songs from Chaka Khan, David Sanborn, Herbie Hancock, Eric Clapton, Aretha Franklin, George Benson, Elton John and Bryan Ferry to name a few. With his distinctive style – a unique combination of funk, groove, soul and pure technical skills – Miller has been referred to as one of the most significant bass players in jazz, R &B, fusion and soul. Bass Player Magazine includes him on its list of ten most influential jazz players of this generation.

In addition to these career highlights, Miller has a rich and very deep resume of outstanding collaborations, including a 15- year song-writing and production partnership with Luther Vandross, resulting in 13 consecutive platinum selling albums of which Miller Produced 7, and a double Grammy win in 1992 – for the double platinum selling album Power Of Love/Love Power winning “Best R & B Vocal” as well as “Best R & B Song”. It was the last # 1 R & B album for twelve years before Vandross’ mega cross-over pop hit Dance With My Father in 2001.

Miller also left an indelible mark on the careers of artists as varied and talented as David Sanborn, Roberta Flack, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Al Jarreau, Bob James, Lalah Hathaway and Wayne Shorter. Most notable, after several years of touring in Miles Davis’ band in the early 80’s, Miller developed a close professional and personal relationship with Davis which led to his collaboration on three critically acclaimed albums – the most famous being the ground-breaking album and title song Tutu, making Miller the last primary producer, arranger and composer for this great jazz legend. The album and title song, which Miller composed, produced, arranged and performed on, is widely regarded as a significant addition to the canon of contemporary jazz music. Not only did the album win two Grammy awards, it is considered to be one of the definitive Miles Davis albums of our time.

Most recently, Miller composed the music for the Oscar nominated film Marshall (2017) directed by Reginald Hudlin and starring Chadwick Boseman as a young Thurgood Marshall and Emmy-award-winning actor Sterling Brown from the hit TV series This Is Us. The film was the winner of the 2017 Chicago International Film Festival award; the 2017 African American Film Critics Award; the 2017 Hollywood Film Festival Award, and was also a 2017 Image and Critics Choice award nominee, and received five NAACP Image award nominations.

Start: June 9, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Cost: $65.00

Fabrizio Sotti w/ Ice T & M1 of Dead Prez

Photo of Fabrizio Sotti

Lauded jazz guitar virtuoso and producer Fabrizio Sotti, has successfully struck a delicate balance between jazz and other musical genres in the past 30 years. It’s only natural given his legacy of diverse collaborations, which spans form Cassandra Wilson, Shaggy, Dead Prez, Ice T, Q Tip, Ghostface Killah, Tupac, Melanie Fiona, Foxy Brown, Zucchero, Roy Hargrove, Al Foster and Randy Brecker to name a few.

On his Sony Hall debut Fabrizio Sotti will be joined by the legendary gangsta rapper Ice T and his long time collaborator M1 of Dead Prez. Mixing jazz and hip hop at its finest, he will revisit some of Ice T’s classics, including their version of Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick In The Wall”. His elegant musical arrangement stirs a potent brew of hip hop and jazz, fortified by flashes of guitar fireworks.

“I have been listening to The Wall since I was seven-years old, “ he remembers “I was an outcast because all I cared about was music. Everybody in Italy thought I was crazy. That song resonated with me so much though. I was also 14-years old when the Berlin Wall fell. It was an historical moment when two worlds came together, and Germany was united again. Ice T, M1 and I wanted to tap into those social and emotional elements. It speaks for itself.”

In 2006, M1 and Fabrizio Sotti collaborated on M1’s Album “Confidential” covering social topics, many of which are still incredibly relevant today. Among tracks taken form this Album, they will also perform “Till We Get There” which features African rap star K’Naan.

Start: June 12, 2020
Venue: Sony Hall
Address:
235 W 46th St., New York, NY, NY, United States, 10036
Cost: 45.00

Marcus Miller Residency

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)

Photo of Marcus Miller, Marcus Miller Residency, sony presents Blue Note Jazz Festival, Link to Calendar page

Special Projects To Be Announced

Marcus Miller has been dubbed one of the most influential artists of our time. At the top of his game for over 30 years, he is a two-time Grammy award winner, (U.S.), winner of the 2013 Edison Award for Lifetime Achievement In Jazz (Holland), winner of the 2010 Victoire du Jazz (France) and in 2013, was appointed a UNESCO Artist For Peace. His characteristic bass sound can be heard on a limitless catalog of musical hits from Bill Wither’s, to Luther Vandross’ “Never Too Much”, to songs from Chaka Khan, David Sanborn, Herbie Hancock, Eric Clapton, Aretha Franklin, George Benson, Elton John and Bryan Ferry to name a few. With his distinctive style – a unique combination of funk, groove, soul and pure technical skills – Miller has been referred to as one of the most significant bass players in jazz, R &B, fusion and soul. Bass Player Magazine includes him on its list of ten most influential jazz players of this generation.

In addition to these career highlights, Miller has a rich and very deep resume of outstanding collaborations, including a 15- year song-writing and production partnership with Luther Vandross, resulting in 13 consecutive platinum selling albums of which Miller Produced 7, and a double Grammy win in 1992 – for the double platinum selling album Power Of Love/Love Power winning “Best R & B Vocal” as well as “Best R & B Song”. It was the last # 1 R & B album for twelve years before Vandross’ mega cross-over pop hit Dance With My Father in 2001.

Miller also left an indelible mark on the careers of artists as varied and talented as David Sanborn, Roberta Flack, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Al Jarreau, Bob James, Lalah Hathaway and Wayne Shorter. Most notable, after several years of touring in Miles Davis’ band in the early 80’s, Miller developed a close professional and personal relationship with Davis which led to his collaboration on three critically acclaimed albums – the most famous being the ground-breaking album and title song Tutu, making Miller the last primary producer, arranger and composer for this great jazz legend. The album and title song, which Miller composed, produced, arranged and performed on, is widely regarded as a significant addition to the canon of contemporary jazz music. Not only did the album win two Grammy awards, it is considered to be one of the definitive Miles Davis albums of our time.

Most recently, Miller composed the music for the Oscar nominated film Marshall (2017) directed by Reginald Hudlin and starring Chadwick Boseman as a young Thurgood Marshall and Emmy-award-winning actor Sterling Brown from the hit TV series This Is Us. The film was the winner of the 2017 Chicago International Film Festival award; the 2017 African American Film Critics Award; the 2017 Hollywood Film Festival Award, and was also a 2017 Image and Critics Choice award nominee, and received five NAACP Image award nominations.

Start: June 16, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Address:
United States
Cost: $65.00

Frédéric Yonnet & Friends

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)

http://www.bluenotejazz.com/newyork/landing.cgi?c=20BNJF&d=cal#june

Using an instrument many have owned but few have mastered, urban jazz harmonicist Frédéric Yonnet’s musical skills and stage presence crush every preconceived notion you’ve ever had about the harmonica. Regarded for decades as the choice instrument of street musicians and loners who wanted to express themselves through country music or the blues, in Yonnet’s hands the harmonica becomes something completely different; a lead voice in urban jazz, R&B and hip-hop. Yonnet presents the harmonica in a refreshing and modern context that is boldly stylish, enchantingly cool and absorbingly brilliant.

Just listen to his sound. It funks. It rocks. It hips and hops. It grooves. It sways. It testifies. It prays. It has a reverence for gospel, blues and jazz while appealing to a generation bred on pop rock and hip- hop. His current collaboration with Dave Chappelle aptly called, Dave Chappelle’s Juke Joint featuring Frederic Yonnet and the Band with No Name, showcases both his harmonica chops, improvisational skills, and music-directing prowess. The show,which takes partygoers on a musical journey reminiscent of the Juke Joints of the South, segues into a band vs. DJ battle with hip-hop legend Derrick “DJ D-Nice” Jones. Conceived by Chappelle and Yonnet, it’s part concert, part comedy and all-out unpredictable when their famous friends stop by to jam.

Yonnet’s impressive style has led to televised and live performances, tours and recordings with some of the heaviest hitters in the music business including legends Stevie Wonder, Prince and David Foster, singer-songwriter and musicians Ed Sheeran, John Mayer, jazz sweetheart Katharine McPhee, R&B artists Erykah Badu, India.Arie, Anthony Hamilton, John Legend, The Roots, Usher Raymond, Robert Glasper, Mint Condition, and hip-hop cipher Talib Kweli.

In 2019, Yonnet’s sound will be lead instrumental voice on the dramatic music of Martin Scorsese’s upcoming theatrical release, “The Irishman” on Netflix. His current collaboration with Dave Chappelle aptly called, Dave Chappelle’s Juke Joint featuring Frederic Yonnet and the Band with No Name, showcases both his harmonica chops, improvisational skills, and music- directing prowess. Other television and film projects includes appearances in Katherine McPhee’s PBS special, BET’s Quincy Jones’ 85th Birthday Celebration and briefly in the encore release of Bradley Cooper’s “A Star Is Born.” (more)

Rolling Stone magazine refers to Yonnet as “Prince’s killer harmonica player,” and praise he has received from comedian Dave Chappelle, contemporary jazzman Bob James, songstress Patti Austin and producer Pharrell Williams affirm his mission to change the way the music industry, musicians and enthusiasts regard the pocket-size reed instrument.

Citing Wonder as a mentor and friend, Yonnet was honored when Wonder tapped him to perform harmonica parts on the Songs in the Key of Life Performance Tour, 2014-16. Wonder performed the entire double album as part of the 44-city tour celebrating the 40th anniversary of the most critically acclaimed album of his career. On the tunes, “Have a Talk with God” and “Mama’s Call,” Yonnet demonstrates his mastery of the diatonic harmonica by expertly mimicking the chromatic melody Wonder originally performed on the studio album. “He’s so good at playing harmonica that another man good at harmonica hired him,” said Dave Chappelle during an introduction of Yonnet.

By After a short stint as a drummer, Yonnet revisited an instrument he had received as a child, the harmonica. “I got kicked outta bands because I kept trying to play the melody on the drums,” says Yonnet. “On the harmonica, I can play both the melody and rhythm. Plus it’s lighter to carry.”

“I’m pretty intense on the harmonica and I like to have the ‘sharpest ax’ in my pocket at all times.” To be sure, he’s not afraid to wield it. There aren’t many musicians who would go tête-à-tête with Stevie Wonder on the harmonica but Yonnet has proved himself more than capable. “Yonnet — a Wonder disciple — had a crazy harmonica duel that almost sent Stevie flying off the stage in a frenzy,” said Fox News following their performance at Madison Square Garden. Without a doubt, Yonnet’s friendship with Wonder has been his biggest musical inspiration. (more)

At the same show in 2007, Prince first witnessed Yonnet’s expert musicianship, exhilarating panache and inexhaustible stage presence. It would be months before their paths crossed again, but when they did, Prince seized the opportunity to have Yonnet jam with him and his band at a house party. “Genius recognizes genius,” said saxophonist Mike Phillips, who performed with them that night and witnessed the energy that Yonnet brought to the band. After that, Yonnet recorded with Prince and performed with him as a featured guest on numerous shows, including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and on Prince’s 20Ten European tour.

While Yonnet enjoys the excitement of performing with some of the world’s greatest music legends, he knows that it’s the technical mastery of his instrument — along with innovative collaborations and solo projects — that will earn him recognition as one of the greatest harmonica players in the world.

Start: June 22, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Cost: $25.00

Al Di Meola

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)

Image of AL Di Meola

Al Di Meola’s ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, andprolific composer, he has amassed over 20 albums as a leader while collaborating on a dozen or so others with the likes of the fusion supergroup Return to Forever (with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White), the celebrated acoustic Guitar Trio featuring fellow virtuosos John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia, and the Rite of Strings trio with bassist Clarke and violinist Jean-Luc Ponty. And while his dazzling technique on both acoustic and electric guitars has afforded him regal status among the hordes of fretboard fanatics who regularly flock to his concerts, the depth of Di Meola’s writing along with the soulfulness and the inherent lyricism of his guitaristic expression have won him legions of fans worldwide beyond the guitar aficionado set.

A pioneer of blending world music and jazz, going back to early Latin-tinged fusion outings like 1976’s Land of the Midnight Sun, 1977’s Elegant Gypsy and 1978’s Casino, the guitar great continues to explore the rich influence of flamenco, tango, Middle Eastern, Brazilian and African music with his World Sinfonia, an ambitious pan-global group that he formed in 1991. Their exhilarating world music fusion has been documented on such releases as 2000’s The Grande Passion (featuring the Toronto Symphony Orchestra), 2007’s Live in London, 2011’s Pursuit of Radical Rhapsody and the stunning 2012 DVD, Morocco Fantasia (recorded at the Mawazine Festival in Rabat, Morocco and featuring special guests Said Chraibi on oud, Abdellah Meri on violin and Tari Ben Ali on percussion).

His earliest role models in jazz included guitarists Tal Farlow and Kenny Burrell. But when he discovered Larry Coryell, whom Al would later dub “The Godfather of Fusion,” he was taken with the guitarist’s unprecedented blending of jazz, blues and rock into one seamless vocabulary on the instrument. “I used to ride the bus from New Jersey to see him at little clubs in Greenwich Village,” he recalls. “Wherever he was playing, I’d be there.” In 1972, Al enrolled at the Berklee College of Music in Boston and by the second semester there began playing in a fusion quartet led by keyboardist Barry Miles. When a gig tape of that band was later passed on to Chick Corea by a friend of Al’s in 1974, the 19-year-old guitarist was tapped to join Corea’s fusion supergroup Return to Forever as a replacement for guitarist Bill Connors.

After three landmark recordings with Return to Forever — 1974’s Where Have I Known You Before, 1975’s Grammy Award winning No Mystery and 1976’s Romantic Warrior — the group disbanded and Al subsequently started up his career as a solo artist. His 1976 debut as a leader, Land of the Midnight Sun, was a blazing showcase of his signature chops and Latin-tinged compositions that featured a stellar cast including drummers Steve Gadd and Lenny White, bassist Anthony Jackson and Jaco Pastorius, keyboardists Jan Hammer, Barry Miles and Chick Corea and percussionist Mingo Lewis. Over the course of six more albums with Columbia Records Al established himself as an influential force in contemporary music.

1980 marked the triumph of the acoustic guitar trio with Paco De Lucia and John McLaughlin. Their debut recording on Columbia Records, Friday Night in San Francisco, became a landmark recording that surpassed the four million mark in sales. The following year, 1981, Di Meola was inducted into Guitar Player’s Gallery of Greats after five consecutive wins as Best Jazz Guitarist in the magazine’s Readers Poll and winning best album and acoustic guitarist for a total of a record eleven wins. The three virtuosos in the trio toured together from 1980 through 1983, releasing the studio album Passion, Grace & Fire in 1982. In 1995, they reunited for a third recording, Guitar Trio, follow by another triumphant world tour.

In early 1996, Di Meola formed a new trio with the violinist Jean-Luc Ponty and RTF bandmate Stanley Clarke called The Rite of Strings. Their self-titled debut was released in 1995. Di Meola subsequently recorded with the likes of opera superstar Luciano Pavarotti, pop stars Paul Simon, classical guitarist Manuel Barrueco, and Italian pop star Pino Daniele. Over the course of his career, he has also worked and recorded with Phil Collins, Carlos Santana, Steve Winwood, Wayne Shorter, Tony Williams, Herbie Hancock, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Milton Naciemento, Egberto Gismonti, Stevie Wonder, Les Paul, Jimmy Page, Steve Vai, Frank Zappa and Cuban pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba.

Start: June 23, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Address:
United States
Cost: $55.00

Jaimie Branch’s FLY or DIE

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Show @ 12:30AM (Doors @ 12:00AM midnight)

Image of Jaimie Branch

FLY or DIE II: bird dogs of paradise is the much-anticipated follow-up to composer, trumpeter, and (now) singer Jaimie Branch’s debut Fly or Die, which was dubbed one of the “Best Albums of 2017” by The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, NPR Music, WIRE, Stereogum, Aquarium Drunkard, and more. Written (mostly) while on her first European tour with Fly or Die in November 2018; and recorded (mostly) in studio at Total Refreshment Centre and live at Café OTO in London UK at the end of that tour, bird dogs of paradise is the result of a never-satisfied branch pushing her distinct style of progressive composition to new heights — while also stepping forward as a vocalist for the first time. “So much beauty lies in the abstract of instrumental music,” says branch in the album’s liner notes, “but being this ain’t a particularly beautiful time, I’ve chosen a more literal path. The voice is good for that.”

On the album’s epic opening opus “prayer for amerikkka pt.1 and 2” branch calls out “a bunch of wide-eyed racists” between searing trumpet ad libs atop a massive, down-tuned blues. On the album’s closing track “love song (for assholes & clowns)” she laughs in their faces – an unhinged, unflinching, mix of anger and humor paired with a classic shuffle beat. Between both ends is an instrumental chronicle that traverses a deep sea of dystopian Americana without trepidation. Her trumpet – sometimes soft and pleading and other times brash and seething – is always at the helm. Branch and company are on a quest for sonic saturation here and they conjure up moments of real reckoning – hopefulness, hopelessness, danger, and joy. A cinematic sojourn from our earth to imagined worlds above, bird dogs of paradise dares you to feel again, or as branch says, “now sound the trumpets and get ready to roll.”

Start: June 26, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Cost: $15.00

Michel Camilo Trio Latino w/ Ricky Rodriguez & Dafnis Prieto

@ Blue Note Jazz Club

Shows @ 8:00PM & 10:30PM (Doors @ 6:00PM & 9:45PM)Image of MICHEL CAMILO

Michel Camilo is a native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. He studied for 13 years at the National Conservatory, and at the age of 16 became a member of the National Symphony Orchestra of the Dominican Republic (NSODR). He moved to New York in 1979, where he studied at Mannes College and at The Juilliard School.

A pianist with a brilliant technique and a composer who flavors his tunes with Caribbean rhythms and jazz harmonies, his composition Why Not! titled an album by Paquito D’Rivera , and the Manhattan Transfer won a Grammy Award (1983) with its vocal version of the piece. Mr. Camilo titled his own debut album Why Not! And followed it with Suntan/Michel Camilo In Trio. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in 1985 with his trio and toured Europe that same year.

Back in Santo Domingo, he conducted the NSODR in a classical program that included his own Emmy Award-winning The Goodwill Games Theme. He was also musical director of the Dominican Republic’s Heineken Jazz Festival, a post he held until 1992. His first three albums, Michel Camilo, On Fire, and On the Other Hand reached the top of the nationwide radio play charts.

Since then his recordings on various labels have included Rendezvous, One More Once, Thru My Eyes, and Spain-Michel Camilo & Tomatito. As a composer, pianists Katia and Marielle Labèque and Dizzy Gillespie have recorded Mr. Camilo’s Caribe. The Labèques premiered Rhapsody for Two Pianos and Orchestra, a commission by the Philharmonia Orchestra.

Michel composed the score for the award winning European film Amo Tu Cama Rica, and for Los Peores Años de Nuestra Vida and Two Much. Mr. Camilo has been a featured soloist, arranger and composer with the Danish Radio Big Band, and he toured as part of a three-piano ensemble with the Labèque sisters. He has appeared as soloist with the Atlanta Symphony; Cleveland Orchestra; National Symphony Orchestra (NSO); Copenhagen Philharmonic; BBC Symphony Orchestra; National Symphony Orchestra (Dominican Republic), the Puerto Rico, Queens; Gran Canaria Philharmonic, Murcia, Málaga, RTVE, and Barcelona (Spain) symphonies; and the Carnegie Hall Big Band. The National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) selected him as co-artistic director (with Leonard Slatkin) of the first Latin-Caribbean Music Festival at the Kennedy Center, where he also performed with his Trio and his Big Band and had the world premiere of his Concerto for Piano & Orchestra, commissioned by the NSO and conducted by Leonard Slatkin.

Mr. Camilo has also performed at the Royal Albert Hall (BBC Proms), Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall and has appeared elsewhere in New York at the Blue Note, Beacon Theater, Radio City Music Hall and Avery Fisher Hall. He performed at the White House in an all-star program celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Newport Jazz Festival, broadcast nationwide by PBS as part of In Performance At The White House, and on NPR’s A Jazz Piano Christmas, hosted by Tony Bennett. Mr. Camilo regularly tours the Caribbean; Europe; South, Central and North America; Israel and Japan. He produced and arranged the award-winning album Lorquiana-Poemas for renowned Spanish singer Ana Belén, and performed a series of solo piano recitals as part of Copenhagen’s Cultural Capital of Europe festival.

Besides performing his own works, Mr. Camilo has performed Gershwin’s Rhapsody In Blue and Piano Concerto in F, as well as Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G on several occasions. He also gives duo concerts with Flamenco guitarist Tomatito, winning a Latin Grammy Award (2000) for their album Spain. Mr. Camilo is featured among the artists in Calle 54, a film about Latin jazz by Academy Award winning director Fernando Trueba. His Classical CD for DECCA features him with the BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin performing his Concerto for Piano & Orchestra and his Suite for Piano, Strings & Harp.

In March 2002, TELARC released Triangulo his Grammy nominated Jazz Trio recording. In August 2003, TELARC released Michel Camilo – Live at the Blue Note his first live album. Among his awards is the Knight of the Heraldic Order of Christopher Columbus and the Silver Cross of the Order of Duarte, Sanchez & Mella from the Dominican Government. The Duke Ellington School of the Arts created the Michel Camilo Piano Scholarship, which is offered to a piano student selected by the music faculty. Berklee College of Music awarded Mr. Camilo an Honorary Doctorate in Music.

Start: June 29, 2020
Venue: Blue Note
Cost: $45.00