Award-Winning Caribbean Trumpet Phenom Etienne Charles Releases Landmark CD “Folklore” To International Acclaim

NEW YORK – World-renown trumpeter Etienne Charles announces the release of the highly-awaited CD, Folklore, already being hailed internationally as a landmark recording.

A native of Trinidad and Tobago and emanating from a robust fourth-generation musical family heritage, Charles has composed and brilliantly delivered a unique suite of Caribbean/Afro-Caribbean music based on West African-Caribbean mythology.

A banner CD release event is scheduled with performances July 21-25, 2009 at 11PM nightly at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola at Lincoln Center in New York. For ticket/reservations, please call 212-258-9595 or visit http://www.jalc.org.

“The music of Folklore employs and combines jazz improvisation and harmony with folk rhythms and chants inspired by the African experience of Trinidad and Tobago,” stated Charles, a graduate of Julliard who won the 2006 National Trumpet Competition, among other performance awards. “At the album’s core is a suite of compositions based on mythical characters of Afro-Caribbean folkloric tradition – creatures that have been a part of that heritage for centuries, as they were brought over by West African slaves and passed down from generation to generation through stories, chants and dances,” he added.

Folklore explores these stories, interpreting images and tales and opening up a true rhythmic and harmonic dialogue between history, tradition and multiple music genres including traditional Afro-Trinidadian rhythms, kalenda, Shango, avalo, fanga and calypso. The result is a unique, involving music reminiscent of the suite-structured work of compositional masters such as Duke Ellington and Charles Mingus.

London music critic John Stevenson stated: “Folklore gives a very poignant sense of validation to the folk aspect of Caribbean society, an aspect through which our collective identity is renewed and celebrated.”

Employing some of the finest Caribbean and jazz musicians in the world, including Guadeloupean saxophonist Jacques Schwarz-Bart, Milan Milanovic on piano, Luques Curtis on bass, drummer Obed Calvaire, percussionists D’Achee and Ray Charles, as well as guest artists Ralph MacDonald, Len ‘Boogsie’ Sharpe, vocalists Keith ‘Designer’ Prescott, Wendell Manwarren and Roger Roberts.

World-renown trumpeter, Etienne Charles

Etienne Charles stands at the vanguard of a new generation of musicians who are from the Caribbean but are not totally of it, in terms of a fresh and broad-ranging artistic vision, and in the myriad influences encompassed in their soundscape.

View behind the scenes of the making of Folklore

Etienne Charles Profile

Etienne Charles (www.etiennecharles.com) was born in Trinidad and Tobago and who emanates from a musical heritage at least four generations deep, is a celebrated, award-winning trumpeter.

He attended Fatima College in Trinidad where he was the first three-time winner of the coveted Provincial Cup, and, at 13, was also the youngest person to ever receive the award.

In 2006, he graduated as Brautlecht Scholar at the Florida State University College of Music, where he studied jazz with legendary pianist Marcus Roberts. He is a graduate of the Julliard School where he was awarded the William Schuman Prize, the highest honour given to a Graduate student.

Charles has been awarded the IAJE Award for Outstanding Service to Jazz Education and a Special Citation for Outstanding Musicianship. He is also an alumnus of the prestigious Henry Mancini Institute in Los Angeles. He has performed with Grammy Award winners Wynton Marsalis, Roberta Flack, Ralph MacDonald, Maria Schneider and the Count Basie Orchestra as well as Marcus Roberts, Monty Alexander, Johnny Mandel, Rene Marie, Gerald Wilson, and many others, domestically and worldwide.

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