- The concerts will be held this Friday 7 July (21.00 hours)
- Entrance tickets are on sale at the premises’ web site
The Festival Canarias Jazz&Más Heineken kicks off this Friday 7 July with eleven nights of concerts featuring some of the best musicians of today. Tenerife, La Graciosa, Gran Canaria and La Palma are the island venues for the initial concerts to be held simultaneously at this 26th edition, which will feature performances by Alfredo Rordíguez Trio and Charenée Wade at the Adán Martín Tenerife Auditorium (21.00 hours). A total of some 46 concerts featuring 26 musical ensembles distributed on six islands, with a first-time experience for La Graciosa; figures that summarise the hectic activity which will fill theatres, auditoriums, and public parks & squares with musical entertainment from 7 to 23 July.
Cuban pianist Alfredo Rodríguez is one of the great attractions of this edition, and will present at his concerts in the Canaries his latest work, titled Tocororo. After studying classical piano at the Manuel Saumell Conservatory, he went on to widen his knowledge at the Amadeo Roldán Music Conservatory as well as the ‘Instituto Superior de Arte’, all in Havana. His interest in jazz was stimulated by the annual “JoJazz” competition for young musicians, where he won an honourable mention in the year 2003. From then on, his evolution was progressive and in 2006, he was selected as one of the twelve pianists from around the world to perform at the Montreux Jazz Festival. It was there he had the good fortune to be noticed by the well-known music producer Quincy Jones, who offered to work with him.
In 2007, he formed the first Alfredo Rodríguez Trio, with Gastón Joya (double bass) and Michael Olivera (drums) and in 2009, Rodríguez accompanied his father as a band member on a concert trip to Mexico, when he decided not to return to Cuba but to leave his country and family and request political asylum at the US border crossing of Nuevo Laredo. With the support of Jones he began his pursuit of a career in music in the United States.
Rodríguez has performed at some of the most important jazz festivals in the world – Detroit, Monterey, Newport, San Francisco, Umbría, Montreux, Mawâzine, Mundo Latino, Shangai…, and has shared the stage with artists such as Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Patti Austin, James Ingram, McCoy Tyner, Esperanza Spalding, Richard Bona & Lionel Loukeke.
One of Rodríguez’s most well-known compositions was accomplished through collaboration with Quincy Jones, Tan Dun and Siedah Garrett; the anthem Better City, Better Life was selected as the official theme song of the Shanghai World Expo 2010.
Tocororo, his new album (Mack Avenue Records), is also a means of telling his own story. The Tocororo is a bird – a national symbol of Cuba – and is a bird that dies of sadness if caged. With this metaphor, Rodríguez reflects not only the desire for liberty but the need to be free. “It’s the story of all that the bird represents: freedom, travel and the fusion of cultures” Cuban with all the others he has experienced throughout his musical journey. “What I wanted to do in this recording was to open myself up to the world, while honouring my roots at the same time”, he says.
Rodríguez expresses in his music a kind of “melding” of Bill Evans, Kenny Werner, Fred Hersch, and touches of Thelonious Monk, with the unmistakeable presence of his Cuban heritage. Here, in the Canaries he will perform with Munir Hossn (bass & guitar) and Michel Olivera (drums).
Charenée Wade is one of the most promising international jazz vocalists around. First Runner-Up in the 2010 Thelonious Monk International Vocal Competition and performer at the Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead Program, she was chosen as one of the talented four to take part at the Dianne Reeves Young Artist Workshop at Carnegie Hall.
Her tone and majestic sound reminds us at times of classic jazz by artists like Betty Carter or Sarah Vaughan, controlling her voice with surprising agility & manner while incorporating personal touches that connect to current avant-garde jazz. Her second album, titled Offering (2015), is a tribute to the repertoire of an artist who had a big influence on her, Gil Scott-Heron. The disc features musicians Marcus Miller, Lonie Plaxico, Stefon Harris and Christian Mcbride.
Charenée is currently a professor at the Aaron Copland School of Music, City College and with the Jazzmobile Workshop programme. She teaches various workshops & clinics and was an esteemed judge at the 2010 Jazzmobile Vocal Competition, alongside Dr. Billy Taylor and Grady Tate.
She regularly graces the stages of the Jazz Gallery, Jazz at Lincoln Center, the legendary Smalls and the Zinc Bar in New York City. Her debut disc, titled Love Walked In, was released in July 2010.
On this tour, Charenée Wade will perform in a quartet formation, with Óscar Pérez (piano), Paul Beaudry (contrabass) and Donald Kontomanou (drums).
The Festival Internacional Canarias Jazz&Más Heineken will cover the islands of La Palma, Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura, Lanzarote and for the first time La Graciosa, where it will plant its seed. An event made possible due to the collaboration by the municipalities of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, San Cristóbal de La Laguna, Adeje, Puerto de la Cruz, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Santa Lucía de Tirajana, Santa Brígida, Puerto del Rosario, Arrecife Teguise & Los Llanos de Aridane; and the sponsorship by the Canarian Government, the Cabildos (Island Councils) of Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote & Fuerteventura, the Town Halls of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Arrecife, Puerto del Rosario, San Cristóbal de La Laguna, Adeje, Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Lucia de Tirajana, Santa Brigida & Los Llanos de Aridane, Casa África, the Adán Martín Auditorium in Tenerife, the Auditorium & Theatre Foundation of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and the Leal, Guimerá & Guiniguada Theatres. Organised by Colorado Producciones, yet another edition is sponsored by the company Heineken.