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Dafnis Prieto

Dafnis Prieto

An interview with drummer Dafnis Prieto is not limited to talking about the usual reference points of influences and current activities. The conversation twists and turns from references to the colonial ambience of his native Santa Clara, Cuba, to his newly discovered love of composing, to the effect of children on his music and thoughts about how the human body influences sound.

After working with the likes of Eddie Palmieri, Jane Bunnett, Michel Camilo, Dave Samuels and Henry Threadgill, the 31-year-old makes his debut as a leader with About the Monks (Zoho). Like his conversational style, the CD takes numerous twists and turns over the course of the nine Prieto-penned tunes. The album features the typical jazz frontline of sax and trumpet, but any similarities with bebop stop there. The Cuban clave is felt more than played and sometimes in odd time meters; melodies take unexpected turns then dissolve into nonlinear solos or rhythmically sophisticated breaks.

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