This musical group of Latin jazz is 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).
JM Churchi & Son de la Tierra
Jonathan Olivares: congas & percussion
Ruimán Martín: contrabass
Augusto Báez: piano
José Miguel Méndez Churchi: drums