"Vivencias en Clave Cubana" is the debut solo album of Cuban cuatro master Kiki Valera, a member of the Familia Valera Miranda, a century-old group and one of the most important purveyors of the Son Cubana. While completely dedicated to the performance of traditional Cuban music, Valera was exposed to Pat Metheny, Wes Montgomery and Chick Corea through cassette tapes while in school and those jazz inspirations elevate the quality of his cuatro solos in subtle and beautiful ways. Joined here by childhood friend, reknowned Cuban vocalist Coco Freeman, Valera and his exciting ensemble pair 12 original songs with beautiful instrumental work in ways that will make you dance, laugh, and possibly shed a tear. Cuba's traditional music has a history of constant evolution from its very beginnings. With "Vivencias en Clave Cubana," Kiki Valera continues in that spirit.
Beyond Salsa Piano is a history and anthology of the role of the piano in the Cuban rhythm section – from its first appearance to the present. In a broader sense, it’s a study of the tumbao – the art of creating music from layers of repeating rhythmic and melodic phrases. Whether these syncopated figures are called tumbaos, guajeos, montunos, riffs or vamps, this Afro-Cuban concept lies at the heart of nearly every popular music genre from salsa to rock , funk, R&B, hiphop and jazz.

While presented as a set of method books, the series doubles as a history course and record collecting guide for listeners, dancers, and players of instruments other than the piano.

Perhaps the most important goal of the series is to provide a comprehensive understanding of how tumbaos are constructed, their central role in the texture of Latin music of all eras, and the endless possibilities they provide for creative composing and arranging.
Contact us to license Latin music for tv & film.

Carnival in San Juan

Artist:   Papo Vazquez

Style Released Album Tracks Charts
Latin Jazz 2003 12 0


© 2003 Ubiquity Recordings Inc. All rights reserved.
Audio album download includes album tracks, liner notes and cover art.
All audio tracks in MP3-VBR format. About LPM album downloads.
# Name Play Time Info
01  Carnival in San Juan
Alternative text
5:42 bomba jazz, percussion guest: Tito Cepeda
02  Mundo Bizarro
Alternative text
7:50 son jazz
03  Las Torres
Alternative text
8:23 bomba jazz, in rememberance of 9-11
04  Plena Pa'Las Nenas
Alternative text
5:40 plena jazz, Roberto & Tito Cepeda (guests)
05  Worlds
Alternative text
4:53 afro-folk jazz
06  Vianda Con Bacalao
Alternative text
5:55 latin jazz funk
07  En La Cueva de Tan
Alternative text
11:41 ** afro-caribbean jazz suite **
08  Stuffy Turkey
Alternative text
6:00 straight ahead jazz
09  Like a Little Child
Alternative text
6:10 really swinging
10  Snow Angel
Alternative text
5:15 jazz ballad
11  Carlitos Coco
Alternative text
4:38 new york latin jazz mambo
12  Fireflies from the Orion Nebula
Alternative text
3:14 ...and Belen (bomba de Puerto Rico)
P-Rican jazz trombonist & bandleader leads his 'Band of Pirates' through extended journeys on the carribbean sea. A latin jazz classic. SUPER SAVER: over 70 minutes of music.

Performing musicians on 'Pirates Troubadours':

Papo Vazquez (trombone, coro, bandleader)
Willie Williams (tenor sax) Arturo O'Farrill (piano)
Joe Shepley (trumpet) Fred McFarlane (piano)
Mario Rivera (soprano & bari saxes) John Benitez (bass)
Roberto Cepeda (percussion) Carlos Henriquez (bass)
Tito Cepeda (percussion) Horacio Hernandez (drums, cua)
Lina de Vazquez (coro) Victor Jones (drums)
Miriam Felix (coro) Susan & Bill Lee (coro)

Born on February 24th, 1958, Vazquez grew up in the heart of North Philadelphia's Puerto Rican community. After buying a $5 trombone from a friend's brother, Vazquez joined his elementary school band. Later he was introduced to the vibrant music and popular Latin dances of the 1950s and 1960s by his family. Inspired by Latin trombonists such as Barry Rogers, Jose Rodriguez and Willie Colon, Vazquez decided to become a professional musician at the age of 13.

By the early 1970s Vazquez had moved to New York and was playing with bands like Conjunto Libre and Hector Lavoe. Before long he was working with top names in Latin music like the Fania All Stars, Ray Barretto, Celia Cruz, Eddie Palmieri, Ruben Blades, Chucho Valdez and Tito Puente. He even appeared on Willie Colon's landmark release "Siembre".

Vazquez has always been deeply moved by jazz and specifically cites the music of John Coltrane and J. J. Johnson as having the most influence. He studied Slide Hampton and later arranged and performed for Hampton's "World of Trombones". Eventually, Vazquez would tour Europe with the Ray Charles Orchestra and perform in New York with jazz luminaries Dizzy Gillespie, Frank Foster, Woody Shaw, Mel Lewis, Pharoah Sanders, Wynton Marsalis, Lonnie Smith and Lenny White. His involvement with Hilton Ruiz, Dave Valentin and Jerry Gonzalez placed Vazquez as a key player in the burgeoning Latin jazz genre.

In the 1980s Vazquez travelled the globe. He played with Batacumbele in Puerto Rico from 1981 to 1986. Batacumbele were one of the most innovative and popular Latin fusion bands of the time. He wrote for Orquesta Nacional Jovenil de Puerto Rico. Later on he travelled as principal trombonist for Tito Puente and toured Europe with Dizzy Gillespie's United Nations Orchestra.

Vazquez' ability to fuse Afro-Carribean rhythms, especially those from Cuba and Puerto Rico, with freer melodic and harmonic elements of progressive jazz has insured his popularity on many fronts. He played on Ruben Blades award winning salsa albums, on the soundtrack to Spike Lee's "Mo' Better Blues" and on "The Mambo Kings". Vazquez most recent appearances in movie soundtracks includes a slot on the "Thomas Crown Affair" with the Chico O'Farrell Orchestra. He also appears on O'Farrells latest recording "Heart of an Angel" for Milestones and Milton Cardonas new recording "Cambucha" on American Clave. In the 1980s Vazquez took his bands to jazz festivals in New York, Puerto Rico, Houston, and Philadelphia. He returned to Puerto Rico in early 1999 and was an integral part of the Dockers Khakis-sponsored Mambo Madness tour which took place in the summer of 1999. The year 2000 sees Papo making trips to South Africa for the North Sea Jazz Festival.

"Papo is one of the premiere trombonists on the scene today...
What you get for the buck is pure unmitigated jazz on the Latin side,
or what I like to call jazz con clave…"