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Latin Jazz

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Sunday 9/14/14 Show: Steven Kroon

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Photo: David France | stevekroon.com

The next show will air on Sunday, September 14, 2014 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This installment of the program will feature an interview with percussionist Steven Kroon. You can hear a short preview of the show below.

Steven Kroon was born in Spanish Harlem to parents who had moved to New York City from their native Puerto Rico. His surname comes from his grandfather, who immigrated to La Isla Encantada from the Dutch-speaking Caribbean island of Curaçao. At the age of nine, the family moved to Queens, where the youngster’s interest in music was further sparked by the presence of many noted jazz and R&B musicians. “In my neighborhood,” he recalls, “I had Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis as a neighbor, and Lester Young was four blocks away. James Brown also lived in the area. But I came with all of my Latin roots, thanks to my father. I was fortunate in being able to hear the whole spectrum of music.” He studied Afro – Cuban percussion with Tommy López, Sr. and later Brazilian rhythms with Dom Um Romão. With such a wealth of knowledge under his belt, it’s not surprising that Kroon quickly became a first – call percussionist for recording sessions that required a wide range of talents. Over the years, such diverse artists as Diana Krall, Aretha Franklin, Roberta Flack, The Temptations, Bill Cosby, Kenny G, Ron Carter, Spyro Gyra, Bette Midler, Gary Bartz and Paul Butterfield have tapped Kroon’s seemingly endless array of skills for their projects.

His two decade-long professional association with R&B crooner Luther Vandross underscores Kroon’s reputation as one of the world’s most versatile and respected percussionists. “My time with Luther was great,” Kroon says today, “but when it came time to do my own thing, I was always knew that it was going to be Latin jazz, because that’s where my heart is.”

Kroon’s 2008 El Mas Alla release, his third solo effort, reflected Latin Jazz’s roots in the type of accessible music that attracted diverse audiences and fans. Kroon approaches the style reverently with an emphasis on finesse. “[W]hen you make an album,” Kroon says, “you need to remember everyone –all kinds of listeners and dancers. If you are having people over for a barbeque, for instance, you should be able to put it on and leave it on. It fits what’s going on.”

Kroon’s latest release is the self-produced and released On the #1, which continues his exploration of Latin Jazz. All About Jazz reviewer Edward Blanco writes that it “features a sweet blend of flute and vibes accents accompanied well by vibrant piano and saxophone voices—all delivered by an A-list cast of players” in his favorable assessment of the CD.

Join us as Kroon discusses his musical influences, his approach to Latin jazz, the Latin music scene, and much more in this wide-ranging interview with — of course — lots of great music.

Show engineered and edited by Joyce Jones. Produced and hosted by Joyce Jones and Hank Williams. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.

Web Extras:
Watch Steven Kroon’s sextet perform live at the Central Brooklyn Jazz Consortium‘s festival.



Watch Kroon’s sextet perform live at the Abyssinian Baptist Church’s Jazz Vespers.

Sunday 7/13/14 Show: Bobby Sanabria live, Part 2

BobbySanabria

The next show will air on Sunday, July 13, 2014 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This installment of the program will feature a return visit from drummer, percussionist, composer, arranger, multicultural warrior educator Bobby Sanabria, who will again join host Joyce Jones live in the studio to continue last week’s discussion. If you remember our special presentation “The Journey,” this time we focus solely on Bobby’s career, including some of his more recent work.

Bobby, the son of Puerto Rican parents, was born and raised in the “Fort Apache” section of New York City’s South Bronx. Inspired and encouraged by maestro Tito Puente, another fellow New York-born Puerto Rican, Bobby “got serious” and attended Boston’s Berklee College of Music from 1975 to 1979, obtaining a Bachelor of Music degree and receiving their prestigious Faculty Association Award for his work as an instrumentalist. Since his graduation, Bobby has become a leader in the Afro-Cuban, Brazilian and jazz fields as both a drummer and percussionist, and is recognized as one of the most articulate musician-scholars of la tradición living today, and is a Professor at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music.

He has been featured on numerous Grammy-nominated albums, including The Mambo Kings and other movie soundtracks, as well as numerous television and radio work. Bobby was the drummer with the legendary “Father of the Afro-Cuban Jazz movement,” Mario Bauzá’s Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra. With them he recorded three CDs (two of which were Grammy-nominated) which are considered to be definitive works of the Afro-Cuban big-band jazz tradition. Bobby was also featured with the orchestra in two PBS documentaries about Bauzá and also appeared on the Bill Cosby show performing with the orchestra. He also appeared and performed prominently in a PBS documentary on the life of Mongo Santamaria.

Bobby is also an award-winning documentary producer whose films include The Palladium—Where Mambo Was King, shown on BRAVO, (see it on Vimeo) and From Mambo to Hip Hop—A South Bronx Tale, shown on PBS; he was a featured interviewee in both films. In 2005, Bobby was voted Percussionist of the Year by the readers of DRUM! magazine. In 2006, he was inducted into the Bronx Walk of Fame and had a street named after him in recognition of the global impact of his work in the arts.

Bobby’s latest release is ¡Qué Viva Harlem! with the Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra on Jazzheads label…

Show engineered, produced, hosted, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.

See Bobby Sanabria live at a free performance in Damrosch Park on July 23, 2014 of Larry Harlow’s Hommy: A Latin Opera as part of Lincoln Center’s Out of Doors Festival. He’ll also be the featured performer at a free performance in Marcus Garvey Park on August 13, 2014 as part of the Summerstage series. Follow our “On the Bandstand” segment on air and on our blog for info on future concerts.

Web Extras:

Watch Bobby perform “Mi Guajira” with a live trio.



Watch bobby and Ascensión perform live.



Watch this short video profile of Bobby done by late WBAI producer Ibrahim González.

Sunday 7/6/14 Show: Bobby Sanabria

BobbySanabria

The next show will air on Sunday, July 6, 2014 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This installment of the program will feature drummer, percussionist, composer, arranger, multicultural warrior educator Bobby Sanabria. If you remember our special presentation “The Journey,” this time we focus solely on Bobby’s career.

Bobby, the son of Puerto Rican parents, was born and raised in the “Fort Apache” section of New York City’s South Bronx. Inspired and encouraged by maestro Tito Puente, another fellow New York-born Puerto Rican, Bobby “got serious” and attended Boston’s Berklee College of Music from 1975 to 1979, obtaining a Bachelor of Music degree and receiving their prestigious Faculty Association Award for his work as an instrumentalist. Since his graduation, Bobby has become a leader in the Afro-Cuban, Brazilian and jazz fields as both a drummer and percussionist, and is recognized as one of the most articulate musician-scholars of la tradición living today, and is a Professor at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music.

He has been featured on numerous Grammy-nominated albums, including The Mambo Kings and other movie soundtracks, as well as numerous television and radio work. Bobby was the drummer with the legendary “Father of the Afro-Cuban Jazz movement,” Mario Bauzá’s Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra. With them he recorded three CDs (two of which were Grammy-nominated) which are considered to be definitive works of the Afro-Cuban big-band jazz tradition. Bobby was also featured with the orchestra in two PBS documentaries about Bauzá and also appeared on the Bill Cosby show performing with the orchestra. He also appeared and performed prominently in a PBS documentary on the life of Mongo Santamaria.

Bobby is also an award-winning documentary producer whose films include The Palladium—Where Mambo Was King, shown on BRAVO, (see it on Vimeo) and From Mambo to Hip Hop—A South Bronx Tale, shown on PBS; he was a featured interviewee in both films. In 2005, Bobby was voted Percussionist of the Year by the readers of DRUM! magazine. In 2006, he was inducted into the Bronx Walk of Fame and had a street named after him in recognition of the global impact of his work in the arts.

Bobby’s latest release is ¡Qué Viva Harlem! with the Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra on Jazzheads label…

Show engineered, produced, hosted, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.

See Bobby Sanabria live at a free performance in Damrosch Park on July 23, 2014 of Larry Harlow’s Hommy: A Latin Opera as part of Lincoln Center’s Out of Doors Festival. Follow our “On the Bandstand” segment on air and on our blog for info on future concerts.

Web Extras:

Watch Bobby perform “Mi Guajira” with a live trio.



Watch bobby and Ascensión perform live.



Watch this short video profile of Bobby done by late WBAI producer Ibrahim González.

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