Prieto Si o Si Quartet
Peter Apfelbaum, tenor saxophone; Manuel Valera, piano; Armando Gola, bass;
Dafnis Prieto, drums
Sunday, June 28, 7:30 pm
Campbell Recital Hall
Tickets: $36 general | $18 students
Tickets on sale now!
By phone: 650.725.ARTS (2787); In Person: Stanford
For more information, go to our Ticketing
Dafnis Prieto’s first appearance at the Stanford Jazz Festival
in the late 1990s is already the stuff of legend. Performing with
Yosvany Terry and Columna B, the young Cuban drummer blew listeners
away with his amazing musicianship, versatility, and propulsive rhythmic
energy. In 1999 Prieto relocated to New York, where he has had an
equally enthusiastic reception, quickly establishing himself as one
of the city’s most innovative and prolific drummers. He has
performed and recorded with artists including Henry Threadgill, Steve
Coleman, Eddie Palmieri, and Roy Hargrove. The rhythmic precision
of his drumming is breathtaking, and his virtuosity is always in
service to the music, never becoming overbearing. As a composer and
bandleader, Prieto makes complexity sound simple and musically subversive
ideas seem irresistible. His music features appealing melodies and
deft ensemble writing along with rhythms that make you want to dance
in ways you never imagined. Prieto’s Sí o Sí (Yes
or Yes) Quartet includes Bay Area icon and saxophone maverick Peter
Apfelbaum, along with bassist Armando Gola and pianist Manuel Valera.
“Dafnis Prieto is easily the most impressive young drummer to
come on the jazz scene during the past decade. Possessing awesome virtuosity
and astonishing versatility, Prieto has made important contributions
to the music of a broad range of leaders… His compositions
are elaborate composites melding Afro-Cuban rhythms and modern jazz
harmonies into music that is ecstatic and intelligent.”
– All About Jazz
Dafnis Prieto website
Dafnis Prieto with Peter Apfelbaum, American Music Festival 2009 presented by WNYC
Si o Si Quartet with Dafnis Prieto & Peter Apfelbaum:
Supported in part by Srinija Srinivasan.
Q&A with Dafnis Prieto
What is the first recording you remember hearing as a child?
It was by the band from Cuba, Los Van Van.
What job would you have if you weren’t a jazz musician?
I would like to save lives, so maybe a doctor.
What’s the strangest experience you’ve ever had on the
I have seen myself playing from above while I'm actually playing on
the stage, as if I were levitating.
What’s your favorite food?
What’s the most exotic place you’ve traveled to as a musician?
What’s the last book you’ve read?
The Empty Space by Peter Brook
If you could play with any other musician, living or dead (with whom
you have not played), who would it be and why?
Hermeto Pascoal. I admire his idea that making music is the most natural
thing in the world, without restrictions or preconceived vocabularies.
What’s your favorite tune?
Maybe “Lush Life” by Billy Strayhorn
What’s your favorite jazz venue?
Jazz Gallery in New York City
Who is your greatest musical influence?
Hermento Pascoal, Keith Jarrett, Steve Coleman, John Coltrane, Ornette
Coleman and many others
If you were stranded on a desert island and could only have three recordings
with you, what would they be?
My last three albums--maybe I could find a good distributor there!
How much do you practice each week?
What hobbies do you have?
I love to spend time playing with my son.
If you could be any other type of artist other than a jazz musician,
what would you be and why?
I don't really consider myself a jazz musician. I play music that
connects with that style as well as many other styles. But, to answer
the question, maybe an actor. I think acting is something I'll
still really like to try.
When did you become interested in music, and what circumstances or
events led to your becoming a professional musician?
When I was around seven years old in Cuba, I lived in a very musical neighborhood.
I started traveling with Carlos Maza to international festivals in
Europe when I was 16 years old.
If you were to describe your music as a color, what color
would it be and why?
Maybe red or orange because they are vivid and send a clear message.