Saturday, December 05, 2009
Paquito D'Rivera in concert tonight at Koerner Hall
Regular readers of this blog are well aware that I have been a big jazz nut for many years. Last summer I went to see Cuban jazz pianist Chucho Valdez. Tonight I get to see his partner in Irakere Paquito D'Rivera at Koerner Hall at the Royal Conservatory Of Music. I'll be rolling into the subway. Mostly he plays sax but he can play any kind of music with any reed instrument. He was born June 4, 1948 in Havana and was playing with symphony orchestras at age five. His father was a classical sax player. D'Rivera first came to the attention of fans here when he was a member of the fabulous jazz group Irakere. Columbia Records made a deal with the Cuban government that allowed them to release Irakere albums here in exchange for Columbia artists touring in Cuba. D'Rivera defected to the US in 1981, moved to New York and has been spreading the Latin Jazz love worldwide ever since. He also plays and composes classical music. He has won many awards including a 2008 Best Latin Jazz Album Grammy for his CD Funk Tango. So I'm very excited to see D'Rivera and I will review the concert tomorrow. Here's Paquito D'Rivera performing Panamericana from the wonderful film Calle 54. I have this on DVD and you should get it too.