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Saturday, June 16, 2012 | 5 pm
Estaire Godinez, a smoldering vocalist and ace percussionist, the Oakland, California–born Mexican American has recorded more than sixty albums. From stints with Prince to Coke Escovedo to the Brothers Johnson, Estaire Godinez has proven herself a stylistic chameleon capable of wearing dozens of musical hats. Most recently on tour with jazz guitarist George Benson, she effortlessly combines conga beats with a fusion of jazz, pop, and Brazilian/Afro-Cuban in her most recent album, Live from the Dakota.
Formed in 1987 by Oswaldo Bernard and Anthony Apollo, Opa Opa features a distictive blend of rich percussive rhythms, remarkably unique vocals, and brassy horns to make up the powerful sound that differentiates Opa Opa from the crowd. One of L.A.’s premier salsa bands, the group has shared the stage with such artists as Celia Cruz, Willie Colon, Ruben Blades, El Gran Combo de Puerto Rico, and Charlie Palmieri.
Orquesta Tabaco Y Ron’s is a twelve-piece big-band salsa orchestra, composed of musicians from all over Latin America, including Puerto Rico, Cuba, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Peru, Colombia, and Mexico. OTR’s high-energy, hard-edged brand of salsa music has appealed to devoted salsa dancers worldwide, and their contagious rhythms produce an energy that revives the almost extinct salsa sound of generations past. Orquesta Tabaco Y Ron has recorded four studio albums, a remix production, and multiple compilations exclusively for Dimelo! Records. Their arsenal of salsa tracks has gained OTR recognition and respect by tropical music aficionados and musicians worldwide, earning them numerous tours to various cities and countries.
Ciro Hurtado is a guitarist-composer from Perú who has been performing since the early 1970s. Hurtado is one of the founding members and musical director of the Latin American group Huayucaltia. As a solo artist he has produced and recorded six albums, including In My Mind and Tales from Home on ROM Records, and was awarded the prestigious Durfee Master Musician Fellowship in 2001 and 2004.
AC (Afro-Cuban) Jazz Project is composed of heavy weights who have toured, performed, and recorded with some of the greatest bandleaders from Cuba and the United States, including Celia Cruz, Hernan Lopez Nussa, Grupo Afrocuba, Manolin, and more. The 88.1 FM KJZZ Latin Jazz Artists of the Year features Fermin Sifontes on piano, Luis Eric Gonzalez on trumpet, Jorge Sawa Perez on bass, Daniel Barrios on congas and percussion, and Henry Mejias on drums. The music is pure, progressive, uplifting, energetic, and full of life.
Vocalist Cecilia Noël is passionate, flamboyant, exotic, and incredible talented—and on her aptly titled new CD A Gozár! (To Enjoy), she demonstrates why critics have long called her the “Latin Tina Turner.” “Salsoul,” the genre Noël created to describe her sound, combines elements of salsa, soul, jazz, funk, and afro-Cuban. Featuring smoking hot Latin grooves laced with rapid-fire Spanish lyrics, A Gozár! is a manifestation of Noël’s love of music and dance and a dedication to her family in her native Perú. Encouraged by the legendary Stan Getz to move to the U.S., she formed Cecilia Noël and the Wild Clams in the 1990s. A “James Brown meets Pérez Prado” band, the Wild Clams received quick attention for their explosive live shows and were booked at the House of Blues and the Playboy Jazz Festival.
Afro-Cuban percussionist Melena was born in Havana, Cuba, and has mastered the traditional rhythms that have traveled from Africa to Cuba to the dance floors of America. Melena is a multitalented percussionist who plays congas, timbales, bata drums, and shekere. She is an artist who exemplifies the sound of legendary players from the past and the modern sound of today. Melena has toured, performed, and recorded with legendary artists such as Stevie Wonder, Macy Gray, Julio Iglesias, and Chayanne.