Jazz From Lincoln Center

Chucho Valdes: Solo Piano

 

  1) Music: La Negra Tomasa (tk check spell.) (trad.) (edit sugg.: use last minute, 4:50-5:50) or Liza (Gershwin) (edit sugg.: start at :45 or 2:13 or use something in 4:45-5:45 or 6:20-7:20/end of song blocks.) 2) Vox: Paquito Rivera (PR int. 1/23/98 at 1:20)

"He can be very funny and absolutely and totally unpredictable. (laugh). You never know what Chucho is going to do."
 

John Benitez (JB int. 1/20/98 at 3:40)

 

"Chucho is like a master in the Latin, you know for his age.// he's still playing like a young guy.// So we really love him."

 

3) Bradley:

NEW YORK’S JAZZ WORLD TAKES NOTICE WHEN CHUCHO VALDES [CHOO-cho vahl-DESS] COMES TO TOWN. FOR TWENTY-FIVE YEARS, THE CUBAN PIANIST HAS LED IRAKERE [ee-rah-KAY-ray], PERHAPS THE WORLD’S TOP AFRO-CUBAN FUSION BAND. BUT BECAUSE OF THE POLITICAL TENSIONS BETWEEN HAVANA AND WASHINGTON, VALDES IS BARELY KNOWN IN THE U.S. BUT, LIKE HIS FORMER IRAKERE BANDMATES PAQUITO d’RIVERA [pa-KEE-toe deh-ree-VAIR-rah] AND ARTURO SANDOVAL, VALDES IS BECOMING A FORCE ON THE AMERICAN SCENE.FROM THE STANLEY KAPLAN PENTHOUSE AT LINCOLN CENTER, WE’LL HEAR THE SECOND AMERICAN SOLO CONCERT OF CHUCHO VALDES. THIS IS JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER. I'M ED BRADLEY.   4) Music: Irakere music   5) Vox: Paquito d'Rivera (PQ int. at 2:35)

 

"He never realized he was such a great // solo player."

 

6) Bradley:

SAXOPHONIST PAQUITO D'RIVERA [pa-KEE-toe deh-ree-VAIR-rah].  7) Vox: Paquito d'Rivera (PQ int. at 2:35)

 

"I remember telling him, 'why you have such a big group?'// I say, 'Chucho, Irakere is a great band and all that. Everybody knows that. You don't need all those musicians. You know what you need. Ten fingers.'"

 

8) Bradley:

COMPOSING FOR IRAKERE, CHUCHO VALDES FORGED A FUNKY, MODERN STYLE, INFLUENCED BY AMERICAN ROCK AND AFRO-CUBAN DRUMMING. BUT ALONE AT THE PIANO, VALDES IS A ROMANTIC.AND LIKE TWO OF HIS MUSICAL IDOLS, ART TATUM AND OSCAR PETERSON, HE’S ALSO A VIRTUOSO. VALDES WARMS UP ON A TUNE FROM THE ELLINGTON BAND BOOK.AT LINCOLN CENTER'S STANLEY KAPLAN PENTHOUSE, "THINGS AIN'T WHAT THEY USED TO BE."

 

9) Music: Things Ain't What They Used to Be (Mercer Ellington) (5:37)

10) Bradley:

SOLO PIANIST CHUCHO VALDES WITH MERCER ELLINGTON'S "THINGS AIN'T WHAT THEY USED TO BE." MAJOR SUPPORT FOR JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER IS PROVIDED BY DISCOVER CARD AND "MUSIC DISCOVER STYLE" -- ENHANCING PEOPLE'S LIVES THROUGH MUSIC.IN THE YEARS AFTER WORLD WAR II, HAVANA WAS A TOURISTS’ PARADISE; THE BEACHES WERE BEAUTIFUL AND THE NIGHTCLUBS WERE FULL OF AMERICAN AND CUBAN STARS. CHUCHO’S FATHER, BEBO VALDES [BAY-bo vahl-DESS], WAS A PROMINENT BANDLEADER AND ARRANGER.  11) Vox: Chucho Valdes (CW 6/97 at 6:30)

 

"//When I was a kid, six or seven years, my father was a piano player of the Tropicana cabaret and he accompanied on piano Nat King Cole, Sarah Vaughan, many, many, Roy Haynes, and all the American musicians who come to Cuba and my ambient // was not only the //Afro-cuban, was the jazz puro , Ray Brown, Milt Jackson, Buddy Rich."

 

12) Bradley:

ONE OF THE AMERICAN ARTISTS THAT VALDES REMEMBERS BEST IS NAT "KING" COLE. HIS FATHER PLAYED PIANO AND WROTE ARRANGEMENTS FOR COLE'S ALBUM, "COLE EN ESPANOL."AT THE KAPLAN PENTHOUSE, CHUCHO VALDES TAKES ONE O NAT "KING" COLE’S BIGGEST HITS AND GIVES IT HIS OWN CUBAN SPIN. "MONA LISA."

 

13) Music: Mona Lisa (Ray Evans) (3:39)

14) Bradley:

CHUCHO VALDES AT THE PIANO WITH RAY EVAN’S, "MONA LISA." CHUCHO VALDES WAS A CHILD PIANO PRODIGY, STUDYING MUSIC THEORY AT THE AGE OF FIVE. FOUR YEARS LATER, HE WAS LEARNING CLASSICAL HARMONY AND ORCHESTRATION FROM THE GREATEST CUBAN MUSICIANS. BY 16, HE HAD FORMED HIS OWN JAZZ TRIO AND TWO YEARS LATER THEY WERE RECORDING FOR RCA.AT HOME, CHUCHO WOULD HEAR HIS FATHER PLAY TRADITIONAL CUBAN TUNES LIKE "EL MANISERO" [man-ee-SAIR-oh] --OR "THE PEANUT VENDOR."

 

15) (EDIT)16) (EDIT)17) Music: El Manisero (Moises Simons) (4:48)

18) Bradley:

THE CUBAN CLASSIC, "EL MANISERO"--- CHUCHO VALDES AT THE PIANO.IN THE MID-60'S WITH THE AMERICAN EMBARGO WHEN FIDEL CASTRO PUT THE BRAKES ON FREEWHEELING HAVANA, MUSICAL EXCHANGES WITH THE U.S. SLOWED CONSIDERABLY. IT WAS LUCKY THAT CUBAN MUSIC WAS SO RICH TO BEGIN WITH.VALDES STILL HAD AT HIS DISPOSAL A MUSICAL CULTURE SHOT THROUGH WITH AFRICAN, SPANISH AND FRENCH INFLUENCES. A 19TH CENTURY SYNTHESIS OF THESE TRADITIONS IS THE DANZON [dan-ZOHN] -- CUBA’S NATIONAL DANCE. CHUCHO VALDES PLAYS HIS OWN UNCONVENTIONAL VERSION OF A FAMOUS DANZON, "TRES LINDAS CUBANAS," [TREHS LEEN-das Coo-BAHN-ahs] OR "THREE LOVELY CUBAN LADIES."

 

21) Music: Tres Lindas Cubanas (Trad.) (6:09)

22) Bradley:

CHUCHO VALDES, SOLO PIANO, WITH "TRES LINDAS CUBANAS" AT THE STANLEY KAPLAN PENTHOUSE.CUBA’S DANZON [dan-ZOHN] HAD ITS ROOTS IN EUROPEAN SALONS, WHILE THE "SON" [sohn] CAME FROM THE COUNTRY. AROUND THE TURN OF THE CENTURY, "SON" DEVELOPED FROM WEST-AFRICAN AND RURAL SPANISH AND FRENCH INFLUENCES. IT WOULD COME TO DOMINATE POPULAR MUSIC IN CUBA AND FUELED THE SALSA CRAZE IN THE U.S. CHUCHO VALDES WITH RENE TRANSLATER LOPEZ.   23) Vox: Chucho Valdes and Rene Lopez (CV and RL 1/25/98 at 15:00)

 

(note: I'm just writing Rene's part but of course include Chucho. The two go back and forth with Rene translating pretty much word for word.)

// There have been varieties of son, derivatives of son, that have been fads, that have become very popular, but you always go back to the son. // But the pure son is the heart of Cuban// taste. "

 

24) Bradley:

A FOLKLORIC "SON" WAS ORIGINALLY PLAYED ON THE TRES [trehs], A CUBAN GUITAR WITH A MUCH NARROWER RANGE THAN THE PIANO. VALDES SUGGESTS THAT SOUND BY MAKING HIS RHYTHMIC PATTERNS MORE REGULAR AND PLAYING HIS CHORDS WITH FEWER NOTES.   25) Vox: Chucho Valdez and Rene Lopez (CV/RL int. at 31:20)

 

"It's not always possible to play everything that's written for one specific instrument on another instrument// but there are certain things yes that can be done.// The ideal// is to think of the characteristic of each instrument and play within that characteristic."

 

26) Bradley: [alternate intro]

FROM THE KAPLAN PENTHOUSE, CHUCHO VALDES WITH HIS VARIATIONS ON A TRADITIONAL "SON."

27) Music: Son (Trad.) (4:12)

 

28) Bradley:

CHUCHO VALDEZ WITH A TRADITIONAL "SON."

29) Music: Somewhere Over the Rainbow (Arlen) (edit sugg.: begin at :28 or :37 or :52) or Tu Mi Delirio (Portillo de la Cruz) (edit sugg.: begin at :35 or 1:33 or 2:29)

[midbreak]  

30) Bradley:

MAJOR SUPPORT FOR JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER IS PROVIDED BY DISCOVER CARD AND "MUSIC DISCOVER STYLE" -- ENHANCING PEOPLE'S LIVES THROUGH MUSIC.ADDITIONAL SUPPORT COMES FROM THE NORMAN AND ROSITA WINSTON FOUNDATION, THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS, THE CORPORATION FOR PUBLIC BROADCASTING, NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO MEMBER STATIONS AND -- THE LILA (LYE-la) WALLACE READER'S DIGEST FUND -- HELPING PEOPLE TO MAKE THE ARTS A PART OF THEIR EVERYDAY LIVES.FOR INFORMATION ABOUT CD COMPILATIONS OF JAZZ AT LINCOLN CENTER, CALL TOLL FREE 1-888 22 SWING. FOR A COMPLETE LIST OF THIS SEASON'S PROGRAMS, YOU CAN WRITE TO JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER, NEW YORK CITY 10023, OR E-MAIL TO "SWING AT JAZZRADIO DOT ORG."YOU'RE LISTENING TO JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER. I'M ED BRADLEY.

 

[Midbreak @ tk -- (incl. :12 as bed for local stations ID's)]

 [music fades to actuality]  31) Vox: Chucho Valdes (CV int. 8/98 concert at 14:15)

 

"I think that is very important, cultural interchange. Because cultural interchange is not politic. It's music. I think Cuban music has an African influence and I think that the jazz music has a African influence too. The roots is in Africa. For that reason, we can make a fusion of both element//. Now we can make some new music here in the United States and in Cuba too."

 

32) Bradley:

MARIO BAUZA [bow-ZAH], DIZZY GILLESPIE AND MACHITO PIONEERED "AFRO-CUBAN" JAZZ.NOW CHUCHO VALDES IS AT THE CENTER OF THE NEXT CUBAN-AMERICAN FUSION. AS DIRECTOR OF THE HAVANA JAZZ FESTIVAL, HE’S BROUGHT TOGETHER MUSICIANS FROM ALL OVER THE AMERICAS. AS A MUSICIAN, HE’S SYNTHESIZES THEIR STYLES AT THE KEYBOARD.BASSIST JOHN BENITEZ PLAYED WITH CHUCHO VALDES IN ROY HARGROVE’S BANDS.  33) Vox: John Benitez (JB int. at 11:35)

 

"The thing about Chucho is that Chucho could play // Afro-American music with the feeling of a you know a guy from Harlem.// That's what I really respect about him.// It's not so mental, it appeals to your feeling, you know, and (snaps finger) how you could swing."

 

34) Bradley:

THE TWO MUSICAL CULTURES COULDN'T BE MORE TIGHTLY BOUND THAN WHEN VALDES PLAYS A STANDARD. ON THE TUNE "LIZA," HIS HEAVILY PEDALLED BASS CHORDS HAVE A GOSPEL RING; THE FLASHY KEYBOARD RUNS MAY ALSO REMIND YOU OF ART TATUM. CHUCHO VALDES PLAYS GEORGE GERSHWIN'S "LIZA."

 

35) Music: Liza (Gershwin) (7:25)

36) Bradley:

PIANIST CHUCHO VALDES WITH "LIZA"--- AT LINCOLN CENTER’S STANLEY KAPLAN PENTHOUSE.   37) Vox: John Benitez (JB int. at 10:15)

 

"He's an impressionist freak. You know, he love Debussy, he love you know // Ravel, everything

 

38) Bradley:

JOHN BENITEZ  39) Vox: John Benitez (JB int. at 10:15)

 

"He's always searching// It's like incredible.// Because he knows well classical repetoire, he knows the jazz repetoire as well plus he is folkloric."

40) Bradley:

OVER THE YEARS, THE SONG "BESAME MUCHO" [BEH-sah-may MOO-cho] HAS BECOME ALMOST A PARODY OF THE LATIN LOVE SONG. BUT AT THE PIANO, VALDES STRIPS IT OF CLICHES AND USES IT AS A SHOWCASE FOR HIS CLASSICAL SKILLS.HERE IS CHUCHO VALDEZ WITH "BESAME MUCHO."

 

41) Music: Besame Mucho (tk) (6:45)

42) Bradley:

PIANIST CHUCHO VALDES. "BESAME MUCHO." THIS IS JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER. I'M ED BRADLEY. AUTUMN LEAVES IS A BALLAD STANDARD WRITTEN IN A MELANCHOLY MOOD. CHUCHO VALDES RESPONDS TO THE TUNE WITH A LYRICISM THAT HE’S ABSORBED FROM THE PIANIST BILL EVANS. HE RUNS THROUGH A KALEIDESCOPE OF MELODIES AND TEMPOS, BUT HE NEVER LOSES TOUCH WITH THE SONG'S ROMANTIC FEEL. AT THE KAPLAN PENTHOUSE, CHUCHO VALDES PLAYS "AUTUMN LEAVES."

 

43) Music: Autumn Leaves (Joseph Kosma) (3:52)

44) Bradley:

JOSEPH KOSMA’S GREAT BALLAD "AUTUMN LEAVES." CHUCHO VALDES AT THE PIANO.THE TUNE "LA NEGRA TOMASA" [lah NEGG-rah toe-MAH-sah] IS A TRADITIONAL CUBAN "SON" THAT VALDES HIJACKS FOR HIS OWN PURPOSES. IN PLACES, IT SEEMS LIKE HE'S SQUEEZING THE ENTIRE TUNE INTO THE PIANO'S EXTREME UPPER REGISTER. AT OTHER TIMES, VALDES LEAVES THE ORIGINAL MELODY AND PLAYS "FREE" PASSAGES, INSPIRED BY THE LIKES OF JAZZ PIANIST CECIL TAYLOR AND CLASSICAL COMPOSER BELA BARTOK.  45) Vox: Chucho Valdes/Rene Lopez (CV/RL int. at 9:10)

 

Things just come// and I keep doing 'em. // (note: skip a minute) I'm improvising, I'm not thinking. // The only thing I'm thinking about is respecting the harmonic structure.// But sometimes I destroy it too (laugh.)"

 

46) Bradley:

AT THE KAPLAN PENTHOUSE, CHUCO VALDES PLAYS "LA NEGRA TOMASA."

 

47) Music: La Negra Tomassa (Trad.) (5:54)

48) Bradley:

A ONE-MAN FUSION OF LATIN RHYTHM, EUROPEAN CLASSICAL MUSIC AND HIGH-VELOCITY JAZZ. "LA NEGRA TOMASA." SOLO PIANO BY CHUCHO VALDES AT LINCOLN CENTER’S STANLEY KAPLAN PENTHOUSE.  49) Music: Somewhere Over the Rainbow (Arlen) (edit sugg.: begin at :28 or :37 or :52) or Tu Mi Delirio (Portillo de la Cruz) (edit sugg.: begin at :35 or 1:33 or 2:29)

 

50) Bradley: (Credits) JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER IS PRODUCED BY JAZZ AT LINCOLN CENTER AND MURRAY STREET ENTERPRISE NEW YORK. THIS PROGRAM WAS WRITTEN BY JOSEPH HOOPER AND EDITED BY LAUREN KRENZEL. OUR SENIOR PRODUCER IS STEVE RATHE. OUR LATIN MUSIC ADVISORS AND TRANSLATORS ARE RENE LOPEZ. SCRIPT CONSULTANT IS PIA LOPEZ.THE RECORDINGS WERE MIXED BY MICHAEL DeMARK AND EDWARD HABER, AND DIGITAL POST PRODUCTION BY DAVID GOREN AT STEVEN ERICKSON'S. OUR ASSOCIATE PRODUCER IS PAUL CHUFFO.THE PRODUCTION TEAM INCLUDES GWENDOLYN DEAN, BRIAN KINGMAN, ANDREW ROSENBLUM [rosen-BLUMM] AND JERRY LA ROSA. THANKS TO APRIL SMITH, CHRISTA TETER, AND GINA AMBROSIO.THE EXECUTIVE PRODUCER AND DIRECTOR OF JAZZ AT LINCOLN CENTER IS ROB GIBSON. THE ARTISTIC DIRECTOR IS WYNTON MARSALIS.I'M ED BRADLEY. THIS IS N-P-R, NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO.

 

Spare Parts

Musicians

PIANIST CHUCHO VALDES BASSIST JOHN BENITEZSAXOPHONIST PAQUITO D’RIVERACHUCHO VALDES WITH TRANSLATOR RENE LOPEZLATIN MUSIC HISTORIAN AND PRODUCER RENE LOPEZ

 

Music

THINGS AIN'T WHAT THEY USED TO BE MONA LISA EL MANISEROTRES LINDAS CUBANASSONLIZABESAME MUCHOAUTUMN LEAVESLA NEGRA TOMASA  

Audio Promo (:30)

1) Music: La Negra Tomasa (trad.) (edit sugg.: use last minute, 4:50-5:50) or Liza (Gershwin) (edit sugg.: start at :45 or 2:13 or use something in 4:45-5:45 or 6:20-7:20/end of song blocks.)

 

2) Bradley:

PIANIST CHUCHO VALDES TAKES A BREAK FROM THE GROUP IRAKERE TO FORGE A ONE-MAN FUSION OF AFRO-CUBAN RHYTHM, EUROPEAN CLASSICAL MUSIC AND HIGH-VELOCITY JAZZ.

I'M ED BRADLEY. JOIN US FOR "CHUCHO VALDES: SOLO VIRTUOSO" -- THE NEXT JAZZ FROM LINCOLN CENTER, FROM NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO.