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BENITO GONZALEZ TRIO
February 1, 2019 @ 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm$24.00 – $28.00
BENITO GONZALEZ TRIO
From New York
INTERNATIONAL JAZZ SERIES
Benito Gonzalez – piano
Paul Johnston – bass
Francisco Mela – drums
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2019
Doors at 7:00 p.m.,Show at 8:00 p.m.
Tickets – $24.00 for EJS members; $28.00 for non-members/guests
Anyone who attended any of Azar Lawrence’s visits to the Yardbird Suite or his concert here last January can attest to the energy and excitement in the performances of pianist Benito Gonzalez.
Born into a family of Venezuelan folk musicians, González has always had a deep-rooted appreciation for pastimes and traditions. Today, as a rising star of one of America’s finest musical traditions, Gonzalez has come to his current status by following in the footsteps of jazz’s ancestral forebears. The fusion of world rhythms and straight-ahead jazz makes this passionate performer an audience favorite all over the world. He has been recognized as an exciting pianist and composer for his well-received albums “Starting Point” and “Circles” in addition to taking home first prize at the Great American Jazz Piano Competition and being part of Kenny Garrett’s Grammy-nominated album “Seeds from the Underground”.
Gonzalez toured for almost seven years with Kenny Garrett and has shared the stage with such luminaries as Curtis Fuller, Pharaoh Sanders, Bobby Hutcherson, Christian McBride, Ignacio Berroa, Roy Hargrove, Rene McLean, Steve Turre, Delfeayo Marsalis, Hamiet Bluiett, Antonio Sanchez, Nicholas Payton, Jackie McLean and the aforementioned Azar Lawrence.
Benito’s most recent recording is “Passion Reverence Transcendence: The Music of McCoy Tyner” on Whaling City Sound with Essiet Okon Essiet on bass and Gerry Gibbs on drums. In the grand, giving spirit of the master, the trio on the recording hold absolutely nothing back and pull no punches on their exhilarating tribute. The three have done themselves and Tyner more than justice. They’ve returned Tyner to the fore and blasted themselves into that rare territory of contemporary jazz masters themselves.
“Gonzalez has a golden touch on the piano, whether he’s playing a ballad or swinging for the fences.”
– The Jazz Page
“Gonzalez proves he can handle just about anything thrown his musical way.”
– Keyboard Mag
“Gonzalez flashes killer chops and swings intensely alongside his world-class bandmates.”
– Blues & Soul