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Dominican Jazz Project
Sharp Nine Gallery
Durham, NC
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Dominican Jazz Project

The Dominican Jazz Project began when Dominican born jazz artist, Guillo Carias, invited American jazz pianist, Stephen Anderson, to perform with him and local players for the 2014 Jazzomania Jazz Festival in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, that was hosted by the Quisqueya 96.1 FM jazz radio program.  The concert and associated clinic went beautifully, and the drummer, Guy Frómeta, invited Anderson to return to Santo Domingo to perform with him in his group for the Casa de Teatro Jazz Festival a few months later.  It was there that Anderson met Sandy Gabriel, tenor saxophonist.  Their collective friendship grew further with that experience, and following the festival, they agreed to record together.

What intrigued Anderson when he visited the Dominican Republic is that while Dominican musicians are very much at home playing Afro-Cuban/clave-based music, their traditional music also has a variety of other lesser known grooves that are not commonly played in Latin jazz today outside of the Dominican Republic.  And while the Dominican piano tumbao patterns sound similar to Cuban montuno patterns, they are constructed differently harmonically and rhythmically.  Anderson was also surprised that these Dominican were so interested in modern American jazz, and that Sandy Gabriels compositions, in some ways, were very similar to the aesthetic that he had been developing in the Stephen Anderson Trio recordings in recent years.  Sandy is an entirely self-taught saxophonist, having no formal training.  When asked how he learned to play so well, Sandy relayed that he learned from transcribing Michael Brecker solos, responding affirmably, He was the best.
After returning home, Anderson spent several months deeply researching Dominican music, transcribing various piano tumbao patterns, as well as other traditional grooves, like the Mangulina, Pambiche, Ga-Ga, and the Palo.  Based on these and other grooves, he composed five new charts for the project, and Sandy Gabriel, Guillo Carias, and Carlos Luis contributed the other six compositions found on the recording.


Sharp Nine Gallery (View)
4608-L Industry Lane
Durham, NC 27713
United States



Non-Smoking: No
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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