Posts filed under ‘Latin music’

Join Mexican Singing Sensation Magos Herrera for an Evening of Fabulous Jazz, World Fusion Style, at Scullers Jazz Club: September 14th, Wednesday @ 8:00 p.m.

Grammy nominated vocalist Magos Herrera is widely recognized as one of Mexico’s biggest contributions to the international jazz scene. As both a performer and composer, she managed to attract a huge fan base both in Mexico and Latin America at large with her strikingly progressive Latin jazz style. Upon relocation to NYC, Herrera continues to enjoy her popularity among US music fans as well. Communicating her songs to audiences in Spanish, Portuguese, and English, she successfully blends  a variety of Latin-based stylistic elements into her compositions, among them: Brazilian rhythmic patterns, melodic motifs from various regions of Latin America, Mexican and Cuban dance features, and Andalusian influences. Add to all of this, a commanding stage performance fueled by the beauty and emotional appeal of Herrera’s voice, and you have an encaptivating performance of  Latin jazz in a highly globalized form, masterfully crafted in  such a way as to move the genre forward stylistically in truly innovative ways.

Magos Herreras became a rising star on the United States jazz scene with a stellar performance at the 2008 New York Winter Jazz Festival. Back home in her native Mexico, she won a national award for “Best Jazz Concert of the Year” and was also called upon to produce and appear in various musical programs for Mexican TV. Her performance career spans over 12 years and includes appearances at such prestigious venues as the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, Lincoln Center (NYC), and Lunario del Auditorio Nacional in Mexico City. She has also participated in both the Montreal and Barcelona International Jazz Festivals. Of the 6 cds she has recorded so far, her 2009 release entitled Distancia is her biggest success, landing her a most coveted Grammy nomination and spiraling to a #1 spot on the iTunes charts. She has enjoyed the privilege of recording with some of NYC’s  premier jazz artists in the making of her two latest releases. Her newest entitled Mexico Azul (2010) features reinterpretations of past hits from her native country’s “cinema golden era” and XEU radio. So if you’re looking for Latin jazz with a new twist, Herraras definitely has the goods for you. 





Event Details:

When: September 14th, Wednesday @ 8:00 p.m.

Where: Scullers Jazz Club (Brighton)

Tickets: $20.00 (Reserved seating)

More Info: For general info OR to make reservations for Sculler’s dinner packages (617-562-4111) 


September 1, 2011 at 1:40 am Leave a comment

Immerse Yourself in a Full Weekend of Latin Music and Latino Culture in Boston’s South End: July 15th – 17th (Friday -Sunday)

Latino culture, on the whole,  encompasses a vast number of varied individual ethnic identities. Wouldn’t it be just great to have the adventure of sampling them all in one convenient location in a matter of days? Well, now here’s your chance at the Festival Betances! This event, viewed as New England’s premier festival of its kind, is literally designed to expose the public to the rich diversity that is Latino culture in one short weekend, jam-packed with ethnic activity in the form of concerts, dance performances, ethnic food, arts and crafts vendors, and other specially created happenings for all ages. And yes, it’s all for free!

Festival Betances, named for renowned Puerto Rican civil rights activist Dr. Ramon Emeterio Betances, is the creation of Inquilinos Beriquas en Accion (IBA). Since its founding in 1968, thanks to the inspiration provided by Dr. Betances, the organization has sponsored a large number of local projects and events, all of which have been aimed at strengthening the Latino community’s presence in and around the Boston area. (See previous post on their Tito Puente Latin Music series) This year’s festival, entitled “I am Villa Victoria”, is in honor of this infamous local Latin cultural center and affordable housing project. The facility stands as one of IBA’s proudest achievements and is considered a historical highpoint in the history of Boston’s urban renewal efforts. Rightfully so, it serves as the site of this annual celebration of Latino culture at its finest. 

This years festival welcomes international music stars Larry Harlow and the Spanish Harlem Orchestra as their very special guests.


Larry Harlow (Appearing 7/16 @ 7:30 p.m.) – This 3-time Grammy nominee, originally from Brooklyn, NYC, is considered to be the forefather of the present day  salsa style. He introduced both heavy brass instrumentation and the use of the Cuban Bata drum to Afro-Cuban music ensembles in NYC, thus enhancing the dance quality of the genre. He was both pianist and producer for the once renown Fania All-Stars and has since continued to thrive in his solo career.


Spanish Harlem Orchestra (Appearing 7/17 @ 5:30 p.m.) – Founded by Oscar Hernandez, this 13-member all-star ensemble has been going strong for over a decade and is most famous for their truly authentic brand of salsa. The formula for this great success is based upon a steadfast loyalty to the age-old traditions of the music from its very roots. This old-school style has won the band a much coveted Grammy award and is well characterized in their latest release entitled “Viva La Tradicion”. 


So what are you waiting for? Here is your big chance to get to know Latin music and Latino culture like never before in all of their wonderful diversity. This festival is sure to be not only entertaining, but highly educational, as well.






Event Details:

When: July 15th – 17th, Friday (4:00 p.m.) – Sunday (9:00 p.m.)

Where – Villa Victoria (South End)

Admission – Free

More Info: 617-927-1707             


July 13, 2011 at 3:10 am Leave a comment

Rock On!!!: Experience the Legendary Sound of Latin Superstars Mana: July 17th, Sunday @ 8:00 p.m.

Mexico’s Mana (listen) are considered to be the major forefather’s of the Latin version of rock ‘n roll. After 30 years or so of producing an impressive array of  #1 hits and performing in front of countless sold out crowds around the world, they have become literal icons of the genre. In addition to the Latin flavor which they have brought to this most popular of Western genres, they have infused it additionally with elements of ska, reggae, and calypso. This highly successful formula of world fusion has earned them countless awards including: 3 Grammys, 5 Latin Grammys, 4 Premios Juventud, 3 Premios Lo Nuestro, 9 Latin Billboard, and 5 Latin American MTV Video Music awards. As a testament to the band’s continued monumental success, Mana’s latest cd release, their 8th studio album entitled “Drama y Luz“, has sold over 25 million copies to date.


Fher Olvera (lead vocals), Sergio Villan (lead guitar), Juan Calleros (bass guitar), and Alex Gonzales (drums), got their start in Guadalajara recreating the hits of their most beloved rock idols like the Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and the Rolling Stones, among others. Eventually they began to sing in their native language, compose their own songs, and ultimately fuse Latin stylistic elements into their rock ‘n roll sound. At the time, they were one of only a scant number of bands experimenting in these areas, so by the time the movement “Rocken Tu Idioma” (Rock in Your language) became a popular part of the Mexican popular music scene, their well-matured style made them a natural favorite among rock fans in their home country.  The group eventually changed their name to Mana which stands for “high energy”, a move they believe helped to bring them the great level of success that they subsequently achieved. This along with a decision to begin personally producing their own recordings along with the embarkation upon a tour that would eventually take them beyond Mexican borders for the very first time. The concert in Ecuador was a sold out success, which gave them the reassurance that they could indeed succeed on the international stage. Since then they have never looked back as they have truly enjoyed a steady and enduring rise to fame which has included, amongst other monumental accomplishments, a historical collaboration with fellow Latin superstar Carlos Santana. 

Mana’s latest release, “Drama y Luz” (Drama and Light) is a true classic as it represents 3 years in the making and is considered to represent a “milestone” in the lengthy career of this iconic ensemble. Over 1,000 hours were spent in the recording studio producing no less than 40 compositions. This cd is a specially selected compilation of 13 of these songs which the band considers to represent their best work. Numerous additional artists,including a whole host of special guest stars, have also contributed their talents to this all-important recording project. Longtime advocates of global ecology, the group composed the opening number, Lluvia al Corazon (Rain in the Heart), as a call of awareness directed towards our declining natural environment. In 1995 Mana founded the Selva Negra Foundation in staunch support of this all important cause. To experience these Latin rock superstars in person makes for a spectacular concert experience to be sure!

Event Details:

When: July 17th, Sunday @ 8:00 p.m.

Where: Agganis Arena (Boston University)

Tickets: From $77.00                

                      Online Purchase 

More Info: (617) 358-7000

(Area Restaurants)                                      

July 8, 2011 at 1:30 am Leave a comment

Spend an Enchanted Evening at a Real Live Argentine Tango Cafe- Right Here In Boston’s Own South End: June 7th, Tuesday (8:00 p.m. – 12:00 a.m.)

Ever wonder what an evening out at an Argentine tango cafe would be like? Well, come discover the answer at the first ever Tango Cafe: a Night in Buenos Aires. For one special night the Beehive will be transformed into a real live tango cafe, complete with professional dance performances throughout the evening to the sounds of The Beehive Tango Orchestra.  These talented musicians and dancers from Boston’s Longy School of Music will make you feel as if you have actually traveled to Argentina for the evening! What fun indeed. 

 In addition to all of this fine ethnic music and dance, guests will also have an opportunity to sample some Argentinean inspired cuisine as well. Native offerings include empanadas (bread or pastry dough containing meat, vegetables, or fruit fillings) and gaucho steak accompanied by Chimichurri sauce (a mixture of parsley, garlic, vegetable or olive oil, white or red vinegar, and red pepper flakes). The Beehive will be serving their regular menu throughout the evening as well.  Drink specials, or “libations” as they are called in Argentina, will be offered all evening long, many of which will serve to highlight the Milagro tequilas, one of the regions finest labels. Reservations are highly recommended for this event, so I think it is indeed safe to say that this should prove to be a popular choice for a highly entertaining evening out on the town in “Buenos Aires, Massachusetts”. 



Event Details:

When: June 7th, Tuesday (8:00 p.m. – Midnight)

           Food will be served (5:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m.)

Where: The Beehive (South End)

Admission: No cover listed

More Info: 617-423-0069

June 2, 2011 at 1:00 am Leave a comment

Honor the Cultural Heritage of Cuba with the Jose Mateo Ballet: May 19th, Thursday @ 8:00 p.m.

I know this is a last-minute posting, but the Jose Mateo Ballet’s Cubania! has sold out 3 nights of performances already- a very good indication that this event is a sure bet if your Thursday evening is still open. What helps to make this particular show so special is that it marks the finale of the company’s 25th anniversary season! Artistic director and choreographer Mateo, a long-time Cuban-American, has chosen to mark this momentous occasion with programs set to the music of his native homeland which portrays aspects of the Cuba’s cultural heritage, sadly still, on the whole, largely unfamiliar to Americans in general.

The show features three individual programs, including two popular numbers from a previous season and a world premier. Ayer Pasado (The Day Before Yesterday) showcases the music of one of Cuba’s foremost composers, Manuel Saumeli. His classical style is a fusion of European, African, and Latin elements. The number features rising star Madeleine Bonn in a dramatically gutsy performance as a loner in desperate search of companionship, ultimately standing as a symbol of isolation from a broader political perspective. Escape, based also on a politically charged theme, depicts the individual’s struggle against authoritarian forces. Set to the music of Leo Brouwer, it stars Angie DeWolf and Mark Kehlet Schou, showcasing intriguing dance lifts and carries. The world premier, Pagano y No (Pagan or Not), is choreographed to the music of Aruan Ortiz, which is a compelling combination of the modernistic classical and Afro-Cuban jazz genres. The piece contains ample moments of high drama as well as comedy, however, it does not carry a distinct story-line nor does it send a politically oriented message to the audience as do its counterparts. Aside from an opening solo danced by August Lincoln Pogzay, this is a powerful ensemble number displaying intense choreography designed to match the character of the music perfectly.



  Under the direction of its founder and renowned choreographer, the Jose Mateo Ballet company has earned a reputation for delivering highly innovative modernized performances of both original and pre-existing works which represent a variety of cultures and are of universal appeal to their audiences. Mateo‘s works have made the list of the Boston Globe’s annual “10 Best Dance Events” no less than 7 times! Now’s your chance to see why, Thursday night at the company’s exciting performance of Cubania! 


Event Details:

When: May 19th, Thursday @ 8:00 p.m.

Where: Sanctuary Theatre (Cambridge)

Tickets: $38.00 

      Tickets are extremely limited! Call the number below and ask for Lori Manzelli 

More Info: 617-354-7467

(Area restaurants) 


May 18, 2011 at 2:05 am Leave a comment

Relish the Richness of a Tride and True Marriage of Latin Music and Its Related Dance Genres with Ritmo Masacote: April 30th, Saturday @ 8:30 p.m.

Ritmo Masacote is a 12 piece Latin ensemble utterly devoted to producing Latin music that closely characterizes the dance genres it represents. “Creating the bridge between music and dance” is forever the band’s creed, as they bring their version of  Cuban-based Timba, Salsa, and Latin Jazz to listeners in the Boston area and beyond. The ensemble was founded in 2006 by lead bandsman Joel Massicot, also a professional salsa dancer and instructor, who has earned the nickname “Masacote” after a Cuban style of salsa or mambo with which he is closely associated. The genre is centered around the fusion of various rhythmic motifs as played on congas, guro, timbales, clave and bongos. Ritmo Masacote remains steadfast in their mission to create a lasting impact upon the modern development of Latin music while moving it in the direction of becoming highly dance-oriented with an inherent ability to instill a real sense of cultural awareness within  its various listeners world-wide. Such awareness,  they believe is key to the ultimate achievement of global peace and understanding for all. Whatever their exact musical formula is, it has developed quite a reputation for its unique character and appears to be working quite well as Ritmo Masacote have developed a huge following.

This dance orchestra is known for their highly energetic stage presence which is often enhanced through collaborative performances with the Masacote Dance Company, also with a reputation for lighting up the stage. The membership of the band is made-up partially of Berklees best attendees, past and present, among them also a Grammy award recipient as well as an additional nominee. They have embraced audiences in Australia, North America, Europe, Asia, the Middles East, as well as South America and, in addition, have been heard world-wide over the radio. Aside from their appearances in motion pictures and on DVD, they have also recorded 2 well-received cds and plan to release yet a third. Even though this particular appearance of  Ritmo Masacote is to be held in the Ryles Jazz Club’s mainstage area, which is not set up for dancing per say, it’s inevitable that the audience, nonetheless, will not be able to sit still in their seats as they bec0me entranced with the infectious Latin dance rhythms of this ensemble’s most exciting and energetic music. 


Event Details:

When: April 30th, Saturday @ 8:30 p.m.

Where: Ryles Jazz Club  (Inman Square)

Admission: $12.00 (Purchase Online)

               Restaurant Menu

More Info: 617-876-9330                       

April 26, 2011 at 3:57 am Leave a comment

Enjoy Weekly Salsa Dance Parties Two Nights in a Row @ the Havana Club!!!: Every Friday and Saturday Night

Whenever you’re in the mood for some Salsa dancing fun to go along with your Latin music entertainment, just head on over to Havana Club in Cambridge’s Central Square where you can enjoy not one but two nights of dj hosted dance party action, well into the wee hours of the morning!!! Start your fun-filled evening off with a beginning or intermediate level dance lesson compliments of Salsa Y Control, who will also be presenting professional dance exhibitions throughout the night. They’ll surely show you just how  far your dancing can go, with a little bit of practice of course! Then try out your hot new moves on the dance floor for the rest of the evening. 

Havana Club features a state-of-the-art nightclub atmosphere complete with festive lighting, a high-tech sound system, and heightened stage to accommodate special performances. Refreshments are served at the full cash bar. And for your added convenience, the facilities are located near-by to ample parking and public transportation. They’ll even reserve tables for parties of 8 or more, so why not bring along the whole gang! Visit the web site and sign up for their online newsletter so that you can stay informed, then … join 300 or more enthusiastic salsa fans at Havana Club for an evening of premier dance party entertainment. Remember, no partner necessary and beginners are always welcome!

Event Details:

21+ only

When: Friday & Saturday evenings (9:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m.)

                 Lessons: 9:00 – 10:00 p.m.

                 Dance Party: 10:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m.

Where: 288 Green Street (Central Square – Scroll down page for directions)

Admission: $12.00

More Info: 617-312-5550 /

(Area Restaurants)         

March 2, 2011 at 2:35 am Leave a comment

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