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TATA GUINES

Daily Dose Of jazz…

Tata Güines was born Federico Arístides Soto Alejo on June 30, 1930 in, the poor town of Güines east of La Habana in the province of Havana in Cuba. He made his first drums out of milk cartons and sausages. But, by the 1950s he was working with such top Cuban musicians as Arsenio Rodriguez, Luciano “Chano” Pozo, Bebo Valdes, and Israel “Chachao” Lopez.

In the late 1950s he formed a band with the pianist Frank Emilio Flynn called Quinteto Instrumental de Musica Moderna, which was later changed to Los Amigos. Güines moved to New York City in 1957 and quickly immersed himself in the jazz scene paying with Dizzy Gillespie, Maynard Ferguson and Miles Davis at Birdland. As a percussionist, he performed with Josephine Baker and Frank Sinatra.

Tata returned to Cuba in 1959 after Fidel Castro came to power in the Cuban Revolution which he helped fund by contributions from his earnings as a musician. For a while instrumentalists fell out of favor with the Cuban public and his popularity diminished. However, by 1979 his star began to shine once again with his work in the Estrellas de Areito sessions, recording for Egrem, the Cuban state record company, which revived the old descarga style.

By the 1990s, he was considered an old master and frequently toured. He recorded with the young conguero Miguel Diaz on the 1995 Pasaporte that garnered them the Egrem Album of the Year award, the equivalent of a Grammy in Cuba. He has played with pianist Bebo Valdes and singer Diego El Cigala Lágrimas Negras (Black Tears) that won a Latin Grammy, and has performed with saxophonist Jane Bunnett.

Conguero and tumbadora player, percussionist and composer Tata Güines, who during his career spanning six decades was known as the “King of the Congas” and who was important in the first generation of Afro-Cuban jazz, passed away on February 4, 2008 in his hometown of Havana.


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VLADIMIR TARASOV

Daily Dose Of Jazz…

Vladimir Tarasov was born in Archangelsk, Russia on June 29, 1947. He learned to play the drums in his youth and though chose them as his primary instrument he has transcended performance to become a composer as well. In 1968 at age 21 he moved to Vilnius, Lithuania where he has lived and worked. For many years Tarasov performed with the Lithuanian Symphonic Orchestra and other symphonic, chamber, and jazz orchestras in Lithuania, Europe and the USA.

From 1971 to 1986, Tarasov was a member of the well-known contemporary jazz music trio – GTC with Viatcheslav Ganelin and Vladimir ChekasinHe has recorded over 100 albums and CDs as a soloist, with the trio, as a sideman and with orchestras. He has performed and recorded with Andrew Cyrille, the Rova Saxophone Quartet, Anthony Braxton, Lauren Newton, and Josef Nadj to name a few.

Vladimir has worked and collaborated in the visual artist field with Ilya Kabakov and Sarah Flohr, participating in numerous one-person or group exhibitions around the world. He has composed music for film and theatre on both sides of the Atlantic, has directed a play and opera, and has been an educator and lecturer at universities and music academies in Bremen, Berlin and Dusseldorf – Germany, Stockton and Sacramento – California, and Pont Aven and Orleans, France. He has authored the books Trio and Tam Tam, has received a grant from the Akademie Schloss Solitude in Germany and has been awarded the Triumph Prize in Moscow for the highest achievements in literature and art. Drummer and composer Vladimir Tarasov continues to perform, compose and record.


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SHERRI ROBERTS

Daily Dose Of Jazz…

Sherri Roberts was born on June 28, 1957 in Greenville, South Carolina and raised in Atlanta. She graduated from college in 1979 with a theater degree and moved to San Francisco. That same year she began exploring both jazz and classic pop, studying with Jeri Southern and working locally.

She began recording for Brownstone, starting with her 1994 Twilight World and continuing with Dreamsville in 1997. She moved to the Blue House/Pacific Jazz label in 2006 with The Sky Could Send You followed by Lovely Day in 2013.

She has worked with Phil Woods, Chris Potter, Lew Soloff, Mark Soskin, Danny Gottlieb, Harvie S and Carmen McRae. Sherri Roberts, vocalist with the warm voice continues to perform, record and tour.


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GLENN FERRIS

Daily Dose OF Jazz…

Glenn Ferris was born on June 27, 1950 in Los Angeles, California. He studied classical music from 1958 to 1967, but from 1964 onward he also studied jazz with Don Ellis. He went on to perform with a variety of musicians in varied genres before moving to France in 1980.

In France, trombonist Glenn Ferris worked with Tony Scott, Brotherhood of Breath, Henri Texier and others. As an educator he currently teaches at the Conservatoire de Paris and leads a trio and a quintet.


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GILBERTO GIL

Daily Dose Of Jazz…

Gilberto Passos Gil Moreira was born June 26, 1942 in Salvador do Bahia, Brazil though he spent much of his childhood in the countryside of Ituaca. The offspring of a doctor and a schoolteacher, he attended the Marist Brothers school until he was nine and then returned to Salvador for secondary school.

Gil’s interest in music began when he was two and grew up listening to the forro music and the street performers of Salvador. Early on, he began to play the drums and the trumpet, and then took up the accordion before attending music school. He first played classical music, but grew more interested in the folk and popular music of Brazil, influenced by accordionist Luiz Gonzaga. He discovered the samba music of Dorival Caymmi, American big band jazz and tango.

In 1950 while still in high school he joined his first band, Os Desafinados (The Out of Tunes), playing accordion and vibraphone and singing. Soon afterwards he settled on the guitar as his instrument after hearing Joao Gilberto and started playing bossa nova. Gil met guitarist and singer Caetano Veloso at the Universidade Federal da Bahia in 1963 and immediately they began collaborating and performing together, releasing a single and EP soon afterwards. Along with Maria Bethania, Gal Costa and Tom Ze, they opened the Vila Velha Theatre with a night of bossa nova and traditional Brazilian songs in 1964.

Gilberto would go on to become musical director of the theatre’s concert series, sold bananas, composed jingles for tv ads and work for Unilever before moving to Sao Paulo in in 1965. Though he had a hit single with Louvação that was later recorded by Elis Regina, his first solo hit was the 1969 song Aquele Abraco. Arrested with Veloso he spent seven months in jail and house arrest and then instructed to leave the country. After a concert in Salvador in ’69 they left for Portugal, Paris and London where he listened to Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff and Burning Spear. He performed with Yes, Pink Floyd and the Incredible String Band. It was in London that he recorded Gilberto Gil Nega and attended Miles Davis and Sun Ra concerts.

Over the course of his career he participated in the Aids benefit album Red, Hot + Rio, win Grammy awards, receive the Legion d’honneur from France, and was the first Latin American recipient of the Polar Music Prize in Stockholm. In between performances he turned to politics becoming the Salvador Secretary of Culture, founded the environmental protection organization Onda Azul (Blue Wave), was a Good will Ambassador for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, became Brazil’s Minister of Culture and then retired due to a vocal cord polyp.

Tenor, baritone and falsetto vocalist, guitarist, lyricist and composer Gilberto Gil who is one of the pioneers of tropicália, and became increasing interested in the welfare of Black culture and focused on Afro-Brazilian culture. He continues to transcend the eras of dance and music trends emerging on the other side with a blend of music styles that stay true to his traditional Bahian roots while engaging with commercial markets.


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