Cory Henry & The Funk Apostles, a luxury opening act for the three nights of concerts in Puerto de la Cruz

  • The public square – Plaza Europa is the venue programmed from this Friday onwards in the new edition of the Festival Canarias Jazz & Más Heineken (21.00 hours, free entrance) 
  • BlueInGreen and JM Churchi & Son de la Tierra complete the billing

Puerto de la Cruz once again is host with the public square – Plaza de Europa being the chosen venue to stage concerts at the Festival Canarias Jazz & Más Heineken, featuring a performance by one of the star acts at this 26th edition, Cory Henry & The Funk Apostles. The renowned group Snarky Puppy’s keyboard player heads the night’s billing on Friday 21 July, with added performances by two local groups; one led by drummer JM Churchi, Son de la Tierra and the other BlueInGreen, a band founded by saxophonist Morgan Hernández. The concerts start at 21.00 hours.

The presence of the Festival Internacional Canarias Jazz & Más Heineken in the ‘Ciudad Turística’ (Tourist City) features as a highlight event within the strategic framework of the ‘Entorno Cultural’ (Cultural Environment) of Puerto del Cruz, a status acquired by the fusion of culture- leisure activities and tourism as an invigorating source of this city in the north of Tenerife, ‘Festival Mueca’, ‘Phe Festival’ & ‘Festival Periplo’ also figure.

Cory Henry (born February 1987) is the keyboard player of Snarky Puppy, a group that has updated & refreshed instrumental soul music like nobody today, and whose performances were experienced by the Canarian public during their earlier participation at the Festival Internacional Canarias Jazz&Más Heineken. A musician who is astonishing the world with his ability to revitalize instrumental R&B, an organist capable of delighting all kinds of audiences with his Hammond. He is also a prestigious producer who has worked with some outstanding artists of today, such as Bruce Springsteen, The Roots, Robert Glasper, Kenny Garrett & Erykah Badu. He is a regular contender at the Grammy Awards and has won on three occasions and received two nominations.

As a member of Snarky Puppy he won a Grammy in 2016 for the album Sylva in the category Best Contemporary Instrumental Album and also in 2017 in the same category for the album Culcha Vilcha. Also with Snarky Puppy, he had won a Grammy award for Best R&B Performance together with Lalah Hattaway in 2014.

His solo career culminated in 2016 with the release of the disc The Revival, on the ‘Ground Up’ label pertaining to Michael League (leader of Snarky Puppy). The disc features the dynamic potency of this artist with his improvisational performance on the Hammond B-3, with a repertoire ranging from old gospel to soul & jazz. A DVD which reflects the life of this artist, who began playing the organ at the tender age of two.

The project goes from his gospel roots to incredibly modern renditions of popular themes by Stevie Wonder. His concerts with The Funk Apostles are an extension of this album & project, in which there also features a blend of other sources of influence: Marvin Gaye, Herbie Hancock, Michael Jackson, James Brown & Jimi Hendrix.

BlueInGreen is the most recent group led by saxophonist Morgan Hernández (Puerto de la Cruz, 1960). Formed initially as a quartet, featuring Freddy Sánchez (drums), José Carlos Cejudo (bass) & Luis Merino (guitar), the band then added Miky Delgado (piano & synthesizer) and Víctor Galván (percussion), thus extending even more their range of sound & style.

Influential factors are many, the foremost being modal jazz, funk, progressive rock of the 70s & 80s and acid rock; which when combined with the rich individual experience of all the members, give BlueInGreen quite a unique, uncategorised sound.

Their repertoire, varied & extensive, include original numbers by Morgan Hernández written specifically for this group, as well as original arrangements of compositions by other songwriters (S.Swallow, Michael Jackson, Björk, etc…) revisited & reinvented in each and every rendition, thus providing it its hue of BlueInGreen; creativity & improvisation being the common denominator.

Since beginning his training at the age of twelve in the Municipal Band of Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife, till the present moment, Morgan Hernández has worked as composer, arranger, producer, session musician…. He has been a member of and collaborated with a number of groups & ensembles, namely: Cebolla Jazz Band, Sin África, Chucho Valdés & Irakere, Luis Vecchio Big Band, Javier Caramelo, David Schnitter & Marti Mabin Group, The Orchilla Meridian Time, Banda Sinfónica Municipal de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Ras Kuko, Trópico 28, Fernikhan, Polo Ortí Group, Javier Infante, Israel Sandoval…

JM Churchi & Son de la Tierra is a musical group of Latin jazz led by drummer José Miguel Ménez, Churchi. Its music portrays Caribbean rhythms incorporating structures related to modern jazz, with special emphasis placed on solos & improvisation. This young group had a breakthrough during the summer of 2016, following a spate of concerts at different venues in Tenerife, attaining a superb reception from the public.

Their first disc, titled Airun, had been recorded in two sessions at the theatre ‘Casa de la Cultura’ (House of Culture) in Los Realejos (Tenerife), on 26th & 27th of December 2016. It’s a work consisting of their own numbers, with special collaboration by saxophonist José Vera Bello on three of them. One of these, Santo Trane, is that musician’s own composition. The album also features a composition by pianist Augusto Báez, titled Blanca Gil, three songs by JM Churchi, titled Nuria, Sin saber por qué and Raúl Latín Groove, one number by guitarrist Beni Lorenzo & JM Churchi, Toscal, as well as two renditions with the band’s own arrangements, a composition by Michel Petrucciani, titled Brazilian Like, and another by the great pianist Óscar Hernández, Decisión.

JM Churchi was born in Tenerife in 1967. Musician by profession and influenced by his father, he began playing the drums at the age of nine. In the year 1978, he took his first lessons in ‘solfeo’ (musical theory) and snare drum, and when he was fourteen years old started playing in dance bands and pop & rock groups. In 1988 he went on tour in Venezuela with the ‘Orquesta Sabrosa’, a band in which he remained for a good few years. Later on he turned his interest to jazz and set off on this career path playing with the Banda de Jazz Latino, Ñus, Garabato…

Members of the band ‘Son de la Tierra’ are Jonathan Olivares (congas & percussion), Ruimán Martín (contrabass), Augusto Báez (piano) and leader José Miguel Méndez, Churchi (drums).

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