Welcome to the Official Site of CHUCHO VALDÉS
“A pianist of imperial command, possessed of a dazzling, deceptively casual virtuosity.”
The New York Times
Winner of five GRAMMYs and three Latin GRAMMYs, the Cuban pianist, composer, arranger and bandleader Chucho Valdés has been a key figure in the evolution of Afro-Cuban jazz for the past 50 years.
His musical education includes formal studies and countless nights on the best stages in Cuba as the pianist with his father, Bebo Valdés, and his orchestra Sabor de Cuba, and also the seminal Orquesta Cubana de Música Moderna. In the early 70s, Chucho distilled this experiences into the foundation of Irakere, an ensemble that marked a before and after in Afro-Cuban jazz.
Chucho was the director, pianist, main composer and arranger of Irakere for more than 30 years. But since 2005, he has focused on his personal career, highlighting his work as a pianist and leading small ensembles.
His most recent recording, Border-Free, finds a Chucho at the top of his game.
Here, he’s leading his Afro-Cuban Messengers, a spectacular quintet comprising yet another generation of young brilliant Cuban musicians, in a search that transcends styles and traditions.
“On the new Border-Free, his mastery as composer and player is on full display: an encyclopedic vocabulary of Afro-Cuban rhythms and an expansive palette that includes all manner of modern jazz as well as traditional classical repertoire.”
The Boston Globe
“It would be reasonable to assume that the magisterial Cuban pianist Chucho Valdés has covered every possible angle on the music of his homeland … Yet he finds some new terrain to till on Border-Free.”
The New York Times
“El maestro Chucho Valdés is one of the great treasures of the music world. ... On his new album, Border-Free … Valdés grounds his work in the aural history of mother Cuba, while seamlessly weaving in aspects of folk, jazz and classical to create a singular musical vision.”
“Be it as a composer or as a pianist, Valdés … is one of the great pillars in the history of contemporary jazz.”
The Houston Chronicle