Exploring New Territory: Fabian Almazan & Rhizome

by chipboaz on June 19, 2017

Share Button

We often close Latin Jazz into the idea of jazz harmony and improvisation over dance rhythms, forgetting that this is simply a starting point. Granted, it’s a very important starting point that sits at the core of the style, but there’s so much more that can be built upon that vital foundation. The idea of exploring culture through the lens of jazz is an evolving proposition, because when all is said and done, culture is constantly changing. Modern artists are bringing in different experiences into their work, and consequently, they are bringing new musical influences into the fold. As a result, many of these new statements can sound very different than that all important starting point, but they can also be exciting new explorations of our music.

Today’s LJC Video Feature explores a young artist stretching the boundaries of Latin Jazz with orchestral writing, jazz experimentation, and more – Cuban pianist Fabian Almazan. Starting classical piano studies as a young musician in Havana, Almazan intensified his studies and expanded into jazz once he moved to the United States, eventually ending up at The Manhattan School Of Music. During his education, Almazan honed his piano skills through studies with Kenny Barron while diving deep into the world of orchestral composing and arranging. He earned the piano chair with trumpet player Terrence Blanchard and began writing film scores, leading to a very busy artistic life. At the same time, Almazan formed his own group Rhizome, to perform some cutting edge music that walked the line between jazz improvisation, classical composition, and his Cuban heritage. Almazan’s first album with the group, the self-titled Rhizome, garnered major attention for the elegance, depth, and beauty of the music. Almazan recently released a second Rhizome release, Alcanza, based upon a nine movement suite that finds the pianist pushing the style even further with bold new music. Our video finds Almazan and Rhizome performing “Sol Del Mar,” a piece from their first album live – it’s some pretty inspiring stuff, enjoy!

Do you have a Latin Jazz video to share? E-mail a link to latinjazzcorner@gmail.com

Check out recent Latin Jazz videos:
A Consistently High Musical Standard: Brian Lynch Performing Freehands
Anat Cohen & Trio Barsileiro Live In KNKX Studios
Embracing Freedom: Frank Emilio, Cachaito, Changuito, & Tata Güines En Descarga
The Strength Of Musical Relationships: Humberto Ramirez & Giovanni Hidalgo
Required Listening: Eddie Palmeri & His Afro-Caribbean All-Stars

Share Button

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: