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Jazz Cafe: John di Martino
October 18, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
“John di Martino truly understands both jazz and Afro-Cuban music and he swings his ass off!” -Mark Levine (Jazz Pianist/Educator)
“John’s soul and being come straight through to his music. The jazz world needs him!” -Sheila Jordan, National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master
“His music is an honest outpouring of light.” -Benny Green, Jazz Pianist
“He is a chameleon. The man revels in playing music.” –Ralph A. Miriello, Notes on Jazz
“[O]ne of the jazz scene’s finest, a pianist who is just as comfortable with bop as he is with Afro-Cuban rhythms and salsa.” -Kelvin Leander Williams, jazz critic, Time Out New York
“[O]ne of the most musically honest young musicians I know. John di Martino’s middle name should be ‘taste’, for he conveys that quality whether he is in a solo or a supportive role, both in Jazz and Latin music.” -Ray Barretto (Drummer/Band Leader)
“[T]he most versed pianist today, in terms of sensitivity in jazz, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian music. I hear everything from Ravel, Stravinsky and Prokofiev to Bud Powell and Monk in his playing, through his own voice. Just a great player and a great person, too.” -Bobby Sanabria (Drummer)
Jazz pianist John di Martino started young and never looked back. By his mid-teens he was playing with salsa bands around Philadelphia, then expanded his repertoire in Atlantic City’s house bands, and arrived on New York City scene in 1988.
Known as a “shape-shifter” for his creativity across musical genres, John is jazz pianist, arranger, producer, and a sought-after musical director. He has performed and recorded with David “Fat Head” Newman, Taj Mahal, Pat Martino, and Houston Person. He has also accompanied and been the musical director for Jon Hendricks, Keely Smith, Billy Eckstine, and Janis Siegel.
John has recorded 39 albums for the Japanese Venus label and many others. He was a long-time member of Ray Barretto’s “New World Spirit”, and a featured pianist and arranger on several of his recordings including: “Portraits In Jazz And Clave” and the Grammy nominated, CD: “Contact.” You can hear him on recordings with Gloria Lynn and Grady Tate. His discography includes many Grammy nominated CD’s, including, “Love” with Issac Delgado, “Freddy Cole Sings Mr. B”, and “Live And In Clave” with Bobby Sanabria.
In addition to jazz festivals in the U.S., Thailand, and Austria, John has a ubiquitous presence in many jazz clubs, such as Birdland, The Blue Note, Zinc Bar, The Kitano, Smoke, Mezzrow, and The Iridium.
“Music puts positive vibrations into the world, directly to the heart. This unifies mankind as all art gives us a feeling of how we are interconnected. It’s a spiritually healing force!” John di Martino, interview in Entrepreneur, India. Visit his website at johndimartino.com.
Doors at 6:30. Following our featured artist is an Open Mic hour.
$10 Members, $15 non-members, includes snacks and a beverage (wine, beer, soda)
The Jazz Cafe is curated by John Wilmeth and Steph Walker. Music Director pianist John Wilmeth is a multi-instrumentalist with experience in many genres. He has worked with the likes of Jerry Garcia, Boz Scaggs, Al Jarreau, James Moody, and Jon Hendricks. Open Mic Emcee Steph Walker is a singer of many genres, and a poet, and has performed at such popular jazz venues as Silvana’s, Flute Bar, The Metropolitan Room, and The Triad.
The John Wilmeth Jazz Trio includes: Dave Meade, renowned drummer/percussionist. Dave has worked with a wide spectrum of artists and musicians, including Nancy Wilson, Keely Smith, and Tony award winning singers Leslie Uggams, Paulo Szot, and Diahann Carroll. Meade has toured with Aretha Franklin, The Mamas and the Papas, and the Arturo O’Farrill Afro Cuban Orchestra, to highlight a few. Back in the day, Dave played nightly at the world-famous Rainbow Room; and bassist Ratzo Harris, a Thelonious Monk Competition semi-finalist, has worked with such musicians as Les Paul, Charles Lloyd, and Betty Carter. “Ratzo Harris plays bass that’s living root and steel girder.” (blogcritics).
“Wonderful! A step back in time.” -D. Berkowitz, Asheville, NC
“Totally delighted the whole evening! Classic intimate place, delightful people, and energy the whole time!” – W. T., Brentwood, New York, NY
“The venue for the music was wonderful. There were round tables complete with table clothes and nice mood lighting. The chandeliers were dimmed and it was a nightclub atmosphere. The music was excellent and then there was an open mike so I got to see a number of talented neighborhood folks get up and do their thing. Some people even felt moved to dance. I loved it!” -G. Walsh, Fair Lawn NJ