I first heard Avantrio on a cold November night in Boston. I'd just
finished my Tuesday night Samba class (at the Green Street studio in
Cambridge) and stopped by Johnny D's in Davis Square just in time to
catch Sofia Rei Koutsovitis in one of her more recent music projects.
This was not the crowded bar thing - but rather an intimate acoustic
showcase among friends of the musicians and this plain but elegant
music. Just Sofia's voice, stand up bass, played by Jorge Roeder, and
Cajon percussion, played by Jorge Perez Albela. Lot's of space!!
I tend to hear a LOT of music - enough so that it's becoming more challenging for me to find something I get REALLY EXCITED about - but here I was on the edge of my seat. Sofia is the kind of singer who doesn't need to get anywhere near the microphone and yet her clear voice fills up the room. And against Jorge Roeder's bass stylings it made for a spare but rich pairing.
Normally when we think about Peruvian music we jump to Andean pan pipes - but this super popular genre has exclisped other beautiful but lesser known Afro-Peruvian styles - and this is what the Avantrio group is exploring. They have carefully selected traditional Peruvian music from the coast ("Música Criolla" and "Música Negra") and the works of Peruvian composers such as Chabuca Granda, Felipe Pinglo, and Nicomedes Santa Cruz - well-kept secrets - and a treasure to international audiences.
But Roeder also brings an American jazz influence to his playing and I found myself on a musical sojourn up and down the coast of Peru, through the streets of Lima, to a place where Jazz mingles with Peruvian Waltz, Landó, Festejo, Zamacueca and Argentinian Zamba.
I LOVED it!!
Can't wait to get my hands on their new recording...
FREE Song Download - Text 'Avantrio' : GETME (43863)
Microfundo Project: New Studio Recording
Help Sofia raise $10,000 towards her next studio recording.