Rafael Zaldivar preps new album RUMBA featuring Terri Lyne Carrington, Kurt Rosenwinkel and more

Juno-nominated pianist and composer Rafael Zaldivar has announced a new studio album called RUMBA that features guest performances by Terri Lyne Carrington, Ingrid Jensen, Kurt Rosenwinkel and Miguel Zenón.

The Cuban-born, Montreal-based artist looks to combine the “holistic vibe and rhythmic circularity of Afro-Cuban music” with a contemporary jazz sound on the 12-track album, according to a media release.

RUMBA’s title refers to the social gatherings of the Black community in Havana, which celebrate the deceased in ceremonial song and dance; it’s a cultural practice Zaldivar has been involved with since childhood. Zaldivar explains that RUMBA aims to promote social interaction, cultural exchange, and the transmission of Africanism.

To bring the recording to life, Zaldivar enlisted an ensemble of world-class musicians, many hailing from different corners of Afro-Cuban and contemporary jazz scenes.

Zaldivar met Terri Lyne Carrington in 2021, and since then he has steadily performed and collaborated with the Grammy-winning drummer and NEA Jazz Master on various projects and concerts in Montreal. Carrington delivers standout performances on two new tracks. Meanwhile, Canadian trumpeter Ingrid Jensen, American trumpeter Kurt Rosenwinkel, and eight-time Grammy-nominated Puerto Rican saxophonist Miguel Zenón each have their own appearances on RUMBA.

Throughout his career, Zaldivar has been praised by the Berklee College of Music, JazzTimes and DownBeat and has worked with jazz icons including Herbie Hancock, Roy Hargrove, John Scofield, Barry Harris and Kenny Barron. His sophomore album Drawing was nominated for a Juno Award for best contemporary jazz album of the year.

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Here’s the track listing for RUMBA:

  1. Eleggua
  2. A Pray (feat. Miguel Zenón)
  3. Interlude
  4. Baila Mi Changüí (feat. Terri Lyne Carrington)
  5. Guajiro (feat. Terri Lyne Carrington)
  6. Two Words
  7. Short Blues
  8. Dolor de Amar (feat. Kurt Rosenwinkel)
  9. Alma
  10. Crying for Cuba
  11. Tiempos de Amar (feat. Ingrid Jensen)
  12. Obbatala

Rafael Zaldivar’s RUMBA will be released Sept. 16, 2022, via Effendi.