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MP3 Marvin Diz - Habla el Tambor

A sophisticated and captivating ride through carnival time in Africa, rumba and dance parties in Cuba and the chicest jazz clubs of New York.

13 MP3 Songs in this album (65:53) !
Related styles: LATIN: Latin Jazz, JAZZ: Afro-Cuban Jazz

People who are interested in Tito Puente Los Van Van Brian Lynch should consider this download.

"...elegance is everywhere on Marvin Diz''s first project, Habla el Tambor...
There is deep rumba, and Cuban dance music, and Puerto Rican vision and ability, and jazz...There is a surfeit of virtuosity..."
Peter Watrous, former New York Times music critic
Brooklyn, New York, January 2008


Marvin Diz Aballi grew up and developed in the bosom of a vibrant Cuban rumbera family. His well-known rumbero uncles Armando Aballi, founded Danza Nacional de Cuba; Agustin ''mojito'' Aballi and Diz’s greatest inspiration his brother, Miguel Valdés Aballi, were his first teachers.

Without realizing it, Diz began his musical career at an early age. During family holidays and the all saint birthdays for his grandmother and aunt, he started marking "la clave" with his hands, sometimes with bottles. In the absence of any "tumbadoras", he played on a set of drawers, drawing out the sound from deep inside.

Diz found his first mentor at the age of just eight years, his brother, Miguel Valdés Aballi. Valdés himself was influenced by his father Miguel Angel Valdés, a highly respected musician known for his work in the "Conjunto Folklorico Nacional de Cuba".

At age 15, Diz starts his formal studies at the conservatory "Gerardo Delgado Guanche". Afterwards, he continues to the Music School of Improvement and Development, "Miguel Cervantes". Meanwhile Diz also receives classes from teachers such as Daniel Diaz, ex-kettledrummer of "Ritmo Oriental"; Blass Egues, the pioneer drummer of "Los Van Van"; the great master, Jose Quintana "Changuito" of "Los Van Van", Roberto Vizcaíno and, of course, his brother Miguel Valdés. Diz''s unique sound is a virtuosic and highly innovative fusion of the sounds of these drum masters.

Diz’s artistic career starts with friends at rumbas, jamming and at saint''s parties. During this time, Diz meets young and old, highly revered music legends from popular bands and from the Cuban jazz world. At this time, Diz lands the opportunity to play in the Jazz Plaza Festival celebrated in Cuba with the Jesús Fuentes jazz quintet. From this moment, Diz becomes a regular member of latin jazz ensembles and popular bands, such as the New Latin Project and the Bakuleye band, among others.

In December of 1999, Diz leaves Cuba and arrives in Costa Rica. He leaves his homeland as member of Las Hermanas Niuvolas. After 8 months of residing in Costa Rica, Diz becomes an independent musician. He begins collaborating with a variety of bands such as; Timbaleo, Son Caribe, Grupo Experimental Canto, Conjunto Chocolate, Rescate, Los Huracanes, Tropicana Internacional, Brillanticos and the Quintet of Latin Jazz Orula. Mexico soon becomes Diz''s new musical horizon. He moves there in 2004 to expand his opportunities and development. Here he plays with the famous, Armando Manzanero, El Gran Fellove, Miriam Bayard, Marcial Alejandro, Miguel Inzunza, Yahir, Orquesta 40 Grados, Kike y su Ache, Silvy Henry among many other artists.

After a year in Mexico, Diz decides to reach for his dreams and make New York City his new home. In one of the world’s music capitals, he has continued to develop his profession. Immediately after arrival, Diz started playing with great musicians such as; Yosvany Terry, Ileana Santamaria, Bobby Carcassés, Jason Lender, José Conde, Yordamis Megret, Groupo Ibboru, Roberto Pitre, Chiemi Nakai, Carlos Boys Band, Son Tannaneras, Son de Madre, Albita Rodriguez, Grupo En Klave and Damon Grant Project, to name a few. Diz has also recorded with, Xiomara Laugart, Edmar Castañeda, Pedro Martínez, Bobby Carcassés, Minino, Grupo Ibboru, Chiemi Nakai, Yorgis Goicicelaya and on two albums with Brian Lynch including "Simpático" which won a Grammy for best Latin Jazz album in 2006.

Diz’s most recent accomplishment, ''Habla el Tambor'' is his first album. Diz succeeds in uniting diverse and great musicians for this project, including: Giovanny Hidalgo, Bryan Lynch, Richie Flores, Pedrito Martínez, Miguel Valdés, Little Johnny, Tony Escapa, Eliel Lazo, Luis Quintero, Roberto Quintero, Ralph Irizarry, Yonder Rock, Mauricio Herrera, Roman Díaz, Bobby Allende, Obed Calvaire, Yosvanny Terry, Mike Rodríguez, Yunior Terry, Osmany Paredes, Pablo Vergara and Ruben Rodriguez, to highlight a few.

Diz’s new projects include two books, one of which will explore the history and evolution of the Timbal. The second will focus on Afro-Cuban rhythms that have so far remained unstudied, such as Sucu Sucu, Changuí, Pacá, Dengue and Mozambique.

REVIEW by former New York Times music critic
Peter Watrous, Brooklyn, New York, January 2008

The best Afro Cuban music sustains a grace and dignity that''s a pure, forgiving product of its tormented circumstances. It has an elegance that fights against the realities of history and the cruelty of the present. And that elegance is everywhere on Marvin Diz''s first project, Habla el Tambor. It doesn''t need to be pointed out; from the first bars of tk until the last note, Diz''s huge cast of characters take on the challenge of making music that is instead willing to measure itself against the highest achievements of the tradition from which it comes.

On Habla el Tambor, Diz has become the most recent of a long line of important musical and cultural synthesists, musicians that stand on boundaries between distinct traditions. The worlds of Cuban music—rumba, pop, religious, carnival—are fit together like well-worked joints with the musical worlds of the United States, including jazz and our own Latin experience. As a member of the Cuban intellectual diaspora, Diz comes more than equipped for the task, with a huge range of experiences within Cuba alone, from his education at Cuba''s elite Miguel Cervantes school of music to his immersion in the trance-inducing dance music that is at the core of the Cuban popular experience.

And as a member of the diaspora, he''s seen all sorts of behavior, from the deepest generosity to the worst sort of criminality. Diz grew up in a fantastically gifted family; his uncle Armando Aballi founded the Danza Nacional de Cuba, and his brother Miguel Valdes Aballi, a well known musician both in Cuba and beyond its shores, has been a powerful influence on Diz’s life and music. (His father was a musician with the famous Conjunto Folklórico Nacional de Cuba.) After working with a series of bands in Cuba, Diz left the country to work in Costa Rica with the band Orquesta Hermanas Nuviolas (the Cuban government raises money by sending its bands abroad). Instead of going back to Cuba, Diz took off around the world, looking for work and amassing a storehouse of experience. He lived in Mexico City for nearly two years, working with a bunch of different groups and leaders, always keeping up with the avant guard of his country that, like Diz, was looking for a place to pursue its artistic inclinations, without too much meddling or tragedy. One of the coros on the Habla el Tambor is the simple declaration, "What I want is for them to let me live."

And that path led, as it does for so many talented people, to New York. He immediately fell in with a powerful group of Cuban musicians, along with the best musicians working in the undefined area between styles, countries and attitudes. And he quickly began recording and gigging, working with Bryan Lynch, Yosvani Terry, Jason Lindner, Pedro Martinez, and plenty more.

So what we have here is the result of all that. There is deep rumba, and Cuban dance music, and Puerto Rican vision and ability, and jazz – both the Cuban and the American versions. There are big band arrangements, and intimate small group murmurings. There is a surfeit of virtuosity, especially among the percussionists. There are electronics and acoustic instruments, solos that reflect current New York practice, and Cuban religious music that might be nostalgic if the religion weren''t such a large part of so many communities in New York—and if the music weren''t so brilliantly configured as it is here. Throughout the music is Diz''s kindness, his openness, his willingness to give without limits. It''s as if he''s decided that generosity is the only stance that''s worth taking against the parched landscape of evil that surrounds us, against the aggressive mediocrity of daily life. Let there be light, and more music like this.

Peter Watrous, former New York Times music critic
Brooklyn, New York, January 2008

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