Gonzalo Rubalcaba Trio

Day 04, 23h30

Gonzalo Rubalcaba . piano
Armando Gola . contrabaixo
Ludwig Afonso . bateria

Pianist and composer Gonzalo Rubalcaba was born on May 27, 1963 in a musical family in Havana. His father, pianist, composer and bandleader Guillermo Rubalcaba, had also played in the orchestra of Enrique Jorrín, the creator of cha-cha-cha; Gonzalo, a child prodigy who by the age of 6 was playing drums in his father’s orchestra, started his formal training two years later, with piano as his main instrument. He graduated from the Institute of Fine Arts in Havana with a degree in composition and by his mid–teens he was working as both, drummer and pianist, in the hotels, concert halls and jazz clubs of Havana. Following graduation he stepped right into the life of the popular musician, touring Cuba, Europe, Africa and Asia with the fabled Orquesta Aragón and also as a sideman in jazz groups and, beginning in 1984, leading his own Afro-Cuban jazz rock fusion band, Grupo Proyecto.

The encounters with Gillespie and, in 1986, with Charlie Haden set the stage to finally showcase Rubalcaba ́s talent before jazz audiences in the United States. These years are documented in a series of recordings in Havana and Frankfurt, Germany, including three superb recordings with his Cuban Quartet on the German label Messidor : Mi Gran Pasión (1987), Live in Havana (1989) and Giraldilla (1990). Rubalcaba moved to the Dominican Republic in 1991 and settled in Miami in 1996.

His international recording career, which includes titles such as Discovery – Live at Montreux, Images– Live at Mt. Fuji, The Blessing, Suite 4 y 20, Rapsodia, Diz and Imagine – Gonzalo Rubalcaba in the USA, has garnered him 16 nominations. He won Grammys for Nocturne (2001) and Land of the Sun (2004), two collections of Latin ballads and boleros recorded with bassist Charlie Haden; and Latin Grammys for Supernova (2002) and Solo (2006).

In 2010, Rubalcaba and businessman Gary Galimidi, founded “5 Passion Records” and since, the label has not only released Rubalcaba’s latest recordings such as Fe (2011), XXI Century (2012), Live Faith (2014), the Latin Grammy nominated Suite Caminos (2015), and Charlie (2016) but also albums by other artists.

Reflecting his interest in music education, Rubalcaba joined the faculty of the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music in 2015.