This year's line-up includes more than 500 artists performing on eight stages over the course of two days and three nights
|The calm before the jazzy storm.|
Tonight, Friday, is opening night of the festival and the shows start rolling at 6:30pm. We have two stellar signings at the Mini-Amoeba tent tonight, so stop on by and meet these jazz luinaries!
Signing at the Mini-Amoeba tent tonight:
Tammi Brown is a sultry songstress and musician who has appeared on stage and in the recording studio with some of the industry’s best known artists. Her live performances have taken her from the Apollo Theater in New York City to Yoshi’s in San Francisco to Mumbai Stadium in India. In addition, Tammi performed at the world-renowned Monterey Bay Blues Festival in June of 2011.
Her career highlights include an invitation by jazz guitarist, Stanley Jordan, to sing background vocals for the tune "Steppin’ Out" on his 2008 CD release, State of Nature, which received a 51st Grammy Awards nomination. Another highlight was co-producing with Tom Schuman of Spyro Gyra, the song "That’s How it Goes," which gained a tremendous buzz among industry insiders. Adding to highlights, she sang an 'Opening Song' for the remarkable Renaissance Poet, Dr. Maya Angelou at the Santa Cruz Civil Auditorium in March of 2011.
Tammi received rave reviews for her performances as a featured vocalist with the White Album Ensemble and the Santa Cruz County Symphony and Monterey Symphony, in California. She is currently a featured vocalist with musicologist and two-time Grammy nominee, Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir as a lead vocalist.
The Pedrito Martinez Group has its roots planted firmly in the Afro-Cuban Rumba tradition and in the bata rhythms and vocal chants of the music of Yoruba and Santeria. Ben Ratliff summed it up aptly for the New York Times calling it “complex, blenderized Africa-to-the-New-World funk.” With its formation in the current lineup in 2008, the group has developed into an extraordinarily tight and creative unit. Members include percussionist Jhair Sala from Lima, Peru; electric bassist Alvaro Benavides from Caracas, Venezuela; and keyboard player/vocalist Araicne Trujillo from Havana, Cuba.
Pedro Pablo “Pedrito” Martinez was born in Havana, Cuba, on September 12, 1973. Pedrito began his musical career at the age of 11, performing as vocalist and percussionist playing with such Cuban legends as Tata Guines and Munequitos de Matanzas. He was brought to Canada in 1998 by Jane Bunnett to tour with her group, Spirits of Havana. His decision to remain in North America to pursue his career proved to be an auspicious one when, two years later, the annual Thelonious Monk Institute Competition showcased Afro-Latin Hand Drumming for the first time. Pedro entered and won first place.
Since settling in New York City in 2000, Pedrito has performed, recorded, and/or toured with Paquito D’Rivera, Brian Lynch, Steve Turre, Me’shell Ndege’Ocello, Eddie Palmieri, Sting, (for his rainforest benefit, with Elton John and Bruce Springsteen), and so many more. Pedro was also featured in 2000, in the documentary film on Cuban music, Calle 54. Mr. Martínez was also a member of the highly successful Afro-Cuban/Afro-Beat band,Yerba Buena, with which he recorded two albums and toured the world, opening for the Dave Matthews Band, Willie Nelson, and Ray Charles. Pedrito has also lent his talents to over 100 records, including albums by Paquito d’Rivera, Issac Delgado, Eddie Palmieri, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Conrad Herwig, Edie Brickell, and many others, including six Grammy®-nominated records, and the Grammy-winning collaboration between Eddie Palmieri and Brian Lynch, Simpatico.Here's the complete Mini-Amoeba signing schedule for this weekend:
Tammi Brown -- 8:00pm
Pedrito Martinez -- 9:30pm
Mingo Fishtrap -- 5:45pm
Tierney Sutton -- 8:15pm
Christian Scott -- 9:00pm
Catherine Russell -- 9:45pm
Kyle Eastwood -- 7:30pm
Meklit Hadero -- 9:30pm
Please check back for updates on our signing schedule and further coverage! Also, check out out interviews and coverage from last year's MJF HERE!