Unlikely Cuban: Miguel De Armas, Ken Seeley, Rene Lavoie

Ken Seeley, Miguel De Armas, Rene Lavoie

Unlikely Cuban
Nov 24th, Saturday 7:30 PM – Tickets $20
tickets available at the door or order in advance by calling 613-729-0693

Even if  I have never been to Cuba (yet) my interest and passion for Cuban music has been an important part of my performing career. Back in 1979, I attended the University of Miami for two years, where I graduated with a Master’s in Jazz studies. The Miami Latin jazz scene definitely influenced and inspired my playing. Several years later, in 1986, with the help of the Canada Council for the Arts while studying in New York city with Joe Allard and Eddie Daniels, I would regularly listen to Paquito D’Rivera and a young Michel Camillo.

My first real studies with Cuban musicians was in 1994 and 1996  at the Banff Centre where I studied flute with the late Richard Egues of the Orquesta Aragôn.

Now, performing with Miguel is for me an unbelievable experience especially when I realised that Miguel was the keyboards player with NG La Banda, a band which I have been listening and dancing to since 1994. – René Lavoie

About: Miguel De Armas is a versatile jazz pianist and composer. He weaves strands of Cuban and American jazz influences in a compellingly eclectic way. Born inHavana,Cuba, Miguel studied since very early age at the Conservatory Amadeo Roldan and graduated from the Instituto Superior de Arte with a Bachelor in Cuban Percussion.

In 1988, he co-founded the acclaimed Cuban band NGLa Banda Orchestrawith other prestigious Cuban musicians. For over a decade, he toured with this band around the world and performed repeatedly at the North Sea,Montreal, Nice,Nantes, and Normandia Jazz Festivals, Color Café Festival,Río de JaneiroFilm Festival, and others.

In collaboration with other members of NGLa Banda, Miguel recorded inCosta Ricathe award-winning album The New Cuban Jazz. It was deemed the 1997 Best Jazz Record by Bis Music.

Miguel has recorded over 50 albums, and collaborated with renown Cuban artists such as Chucho Valdes e Irakere, Los Van Van, Pablo Milanés, Compay Segundo. He has performed at the Lincoln Centre in New York and has shared the stage with internationally acclaimed musicians such as: Michel Camilo, Randy Brecker, Chick Corea, Joe Zawinul and The Zawinul Syndicate, McCoy Tyner, Earth Wind and Fire, Take 6, Dominic Miller, David Murray, the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Afrocuban All Stars, Danilo Pérez, David Sánchez, Giovanni Hidalgo, George Benson, Wynton Marsalis, Ivan Lins, Clark Terry, Tania Maria, Chico Freeman, Dave Valentin, Sammy Figueroa, Robbie Ammen, Gilberto Gil, Ermeto Pascual.

Now Miguel has brought his musical talents to the cityOttawa,Canadawhich he considers his adopted home. His hope is to introduce Canadians to the works of an original Cuban talent whose performances are nothing short of a master class in original Cuban jazz rhythms.