Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Omar Sosa: A New Life

A New Life (Ot), by Omar Sosa, is a piano interpretation of subjects such as Afro-Cuban spirituality and childhood remembrances stemming from the birth of his firstborn. Fatherhood does have an insightful interpreter in Sosa. He keeps the solo date moving right along with vocal and percussion effects and colors, as on “El Aliento.” In truth, the entire piano-inside and out-is Sosa’s instrument. The strumming inside the piano in “Danz-n de los Indios” would be quite fine for any guitarist to pull off. Trap drum rudimental patterns as well as Afro-Cuban percussive ones hit off the piano strings in “Crash de la Tierra.” Still, such deep resourcefulness never comes across as musical swindling. There are, nevertheless, vestiges of an impressionistic intellectual dryness in portions of “Paloma Herida” and in “El Puente Conversando.” Such residue can’t be the only criteria on which the proud new father should be judged. His mature harmonization, as on the darkened drama of “Ofrenda” and the percussive whirlings of “El Campo de Arere,” prevents that. Pass the cigars, man!

Originally Published