From the 1920s on, musicians from Cuba, Puerto Rico, New Orleans, Chicago and New York were all swinging to the sounds of the Cuban Son, often erroneously referred to as “rhumba.” Players on both sides of the Gulf of Mexico were exploring innovative and creative ways to combine the improvised spirit of jazz with the rhythmic drive of traditional Cuban music, all to the delight of dancers obsessed with the evolving traditions. As the infectious sounds were disseminated around the globe, Afro-Cuban dances such as the Son along with the folkloric genre known as Rumba briefly took center stage as the Cuban clave would be heard in film, radio, recordings, and later, television. During the lecture, we will discuss the deep impact of Afro-Caribbean music on the development of jazz while intertwining live performance with classic audio and video clips, and discuss how Latin music is still evolving and reverberating across cultures today. Lecture led by pianist, composer, author and SFJAZZ Director of Education Rebeca Mauleón, bassist, composer and SFJAZZ lecturer Cory Combs with percussionist Jesús Diaz. Come and hear how the heartbeat of Latin music shaped and influenced virtually every musical culture!
Related exhibition: American Sabor – Latinos in American Popular Music. August 27 – November 13. Main Library, Skylight Gallery, 100 Larkin St., San Francisco.
“American Sabor” was created by Experience Music Project and organized for travel by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service. The exhibition, its national tour and related programs are made possible by Ford Motor Company Fund.