On Thursday, May 10th, Mili Bermejo's De Tierra will return to Scullers Jazz Club
exactly one year after recording its self-titled debut, De Tierra
(Ediciones Pentagrama, 2007), there in 2006. Led by Cambridge-based vocalist/composer Mili Bermejo
, this eight-piece ensemble performs a unique brand of modern pan-American music, mixing her two decades of experience in the jazz world with the traditional Latin songs, poetry and social responsibility of the artist she absorbed growing up in Mexico City in the late 1960's and early 1970's.
These days," wrote Jon Garelick in his January feature article on the group in the The Phoenix, Boston is a hotbed of pan-American vocalists -- Sofia Koutsovitis, Marta Gomez, and Teresa Ines come to mind -- but in a sense Mili is the mother of them all. Mili's exposure to the greats of pan-American music was first-hand -- the first time she heard the legendary Argentine singer Mercedes Sosa was in the family living room. Sosa was the type of singer Mili would model herself on."
Critics have called Ms. Bermejo one of Boston's most talented singers in any genre" (Bob Young, Boston Herald), a musical explorer" (Jay Miller, Quincy Patriot- Ledger), and the Latin equivalent of Abbey Lincoln...a singer/ composer who challenges us with her musical honesty" (Alan Bargebuhr, Cadence). She is a 20- year veteran of the Berklee College of Music faculty, a former Jazz Ambassador for the United States Information Service/Arts America and the first woman to receive the prestigious Achievement in Jazz Award from the New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA). De Tierra is her 10th recording as a leader and her latest musical expression of hope and meaning in response to the violence and instability in the world today.