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New York City's Pedrito Martinez Group Signs with Motéma Music


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The charismatic Pedrito Martinez Group - a veritable 'Latino Fab Four' - who met and started playing together at the Guantanamera restaurant in New York City five years ago, is led by the much in-demand Cuban percussion wizard Pedrito Martinez. Pedrito has performed on over 100 recordings, including Eddie Palmieri and Bryan Lynch's 2010 Grammy®-winner Sympatico; was a member of the Grammy®-nominated fusion band Yerba Buena Stompers; and has played with greats such as Sting, Paul Simon and Wynton Marsalis. Co-featured in the Pedrito Martinez group, which melds Afro-Cuban music with influences from funk, blues and soul music, is the sensational Cuban pianist and vocalist Ariacne Trujillo, who has worked with Paquito D'Rivera, and Paul Simon. No less important to the group's infectiously addictive chemistry is Martinez' long time percussion collaborator, Jhair Sala, originally from Lima, Peru; and electric bassist, Alvaro Benavides, from Caracas, Venezuela.

Joining the group as guests on the album will be Steve Gadd and Wynton Marsalis, and John Scofield who delivers a blistering guitar solo on the group's surprising treatment of the Robert Johnson hit, “Traveling Riverside Blues."

The Pedrito Martinez Group's eponymous debut (produced by Steve Gadd with Martinez) features powerful lead vocals by Martinez and Trujillo who preside over the group's impossibly-tight percussion-driven arrangements and infectiously uplifting four-part harmonies. While Martinez's stunning percussion and vocal work leads the unit, the exotic sounds of Trujillo's vocals and piano pyrotechnics also bring an important dimension to the group's sound - she is pianist who is equally at home playing 'Cuban Son' as she is playing Jazz, American Pop or European classical music. She is liable to break into flights of fancy in any of these genres to great effect during their shows.

“We are very happy to sign the Pedrito Martinez Group in our tenth anniversary year"says Motéma Music president Jana Herzen. “They represent everything that Motéma Music is about: breathtaking virtuosity, seamless ensemble work, complete originality and deep spirituality - and you won't find a more heartfelt and uplifting group anywhere on the planet."

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