Born: May 9, 1968 Primary Instrument: Sax, tenor
Diego Maroto was born in Mexico City on May 9th of 1968. In 1985 he started to take private lessons to play the saxophone from teachers Larry Roussell and Alfonso Martínez. From 1987 to 1988 he studied art history at the Universidad Iberoamericana. In 1988 he joined the jazz worksop at the Escuela Superior de Música (INBA), where he was taught improvisation, arrangement and composition by Francisco Tellez. He then continued with private lessons from Danny Matusack (New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, Mass.) and from Darryl Winsman (A well known sax player from the california scene). From 1990 to 1992 he studied with Cristobal López in his improvisation workshop. In 1991, Diego became an active member of IAJE (International Association of Jazz Educators) and participated during three consecutive years in IAJE conventions in Miami, San Antonio and Boston. during this time he also participated in worksops and courses of artists such as David Liebman Ernie Watts, Arturo Sandoval, Brian bromberg, David Baker, Jerry Bergonzi, Ran Blake (With whom he studied a course in specialized ear training), Mike Campbell, Bill Dobbins, Andy Laverne, Don Sickler and Chris Vandala. Diego has been a part of recordings and projects by the most outstanding mexican jazz musicians like Eugenio toussaint, Agustin Bernal, Enrique Neri, Fernando toussaint, Cristobal López, Chilo Moran, Miguel Salas, Francisco Téllez, Iraida Noriega, Big Band Arte 01, La Casa de Agua, Waldo Madera, Línea Tres, Omar Arán and Roberto Aymés, amongst others. Along with his rising carrier as an important representative of jazz in Mexico, Diego has performed with great success on some of the most distinguished venues in Mexico and abroad with some of the most outstanding latin american artists, comprising styles that range from rock (Caifanes, Santa Sabina, L Maldita Vecindad, La Lupita, Miguel Ríos, etc.), pop (Paulina Rubio, Benny, Lucero, Emanuelle, gloria Trevi, etc.) and Afroantillian music (Willie Colón, Jerry Rivera, etc.) In the first part of the year 2004, Diego recorded his first solo album named MUNDO PARALELO in which he is accompanied of an incredible group of mexican musicians like the legendary Eugenio Toussaint. On November of that same year, diego and his sextet performed at Dizzy's Club at the Lincoln Center in New York City daily during one week, where they shared the stage with Antonio Sánchez and other important jazz players of the New York Scene. This was an event that had not been preceded in mexican jazz history. In 2005 a new formation is born with great success, a trio with Gabriel Puentes on drums and Jorge Luri Molina on upright bass. This trio has perforned in several festivals in venues like Palacio de Bellas Artes, where a tribute to Mexican jazz players was made in 2006. A couple of years later this same trio performed at the Teatro de la Ciudad where they shared the stage with George Duke and Stanley Clark, this concert was a great success. As an educator, Diego has given lessons, clinics and seminars in important schools and institutions in Mexico. One of his most outstanding works was the one done in 2008, a seminar produced by Tonica in Guadalajara, Jal., alongside sax player Donny McCasslin. Currently, he is working on the post-production process of his latest album called Diego Maroto Asian Trio, recorded live on March 2013 at the great and prestigious jazz club No Black Tie Kuala Lumpur, Malasya, This album will hit the market in a few months.
Todd Barkan was doing his impression of Linda Blair in the Exorcist as his head was spinning out of control at the way these cats just Jazz waltz'd their way into Dizzy's Club Coca Cola and blew EVERYONE away with their musical interpretation of Jazz music.
Last night was the 5th installment of a week long series that began on Tuesday @ Dizzy's which played host to the MEXICO NOW festival that was taking place in New York for the past 2 weeks which have featured events all over the city. At Dizzy's, New York audiences were treated to a double bill of drummer/composer Antonio Sanchez and his various groups (Trio, Quartet & Quintet) and the New York City debut of DIEGO MAROTO and his Sextet.
I was expecting perhaps a battle of the bands between Antonio Sanchez group whom last night featured Ben Street (bass), Adam Rogers (guitar) and Donny McCaslin (sax) versus Diego's sextet. It was no contest. Diego's sextet was blazin' and took no prisoners. They completely blew the Antonio Sanchez combination out of the water. If the Diego Maroto Sextet were based in New York, they'd give a lot of the local artists a run for their money.
The group consisted of Rey David Alejandre (trombone), who is a cross between Conrad Heriwg and Papo Vazquez. In other words a bad Mo'Fo'! Mark Osito Aanderud on piano, Francisco de la Rea on guitar, and the two finest Bass and Drums combo I've ever heard in Agustmn Pernal (bass) and Gabriel Puentes (drums). Rounding out the sextet was the great Diego Maroto, on Tenor and Soprano Sax respectively.
Make no mistake. The music of Diego Maroto is not some forced attempt at combining native Mexican elements with the harmonies of Jazz. This is no Mariachi-Jazz or a Bop-Jarocho of some kind. This is pure and simple as Straight Ahead a Jazz music as you will hear anywhere. Diego's sextet is on the level of many of the greats and I'll put them side by side next to the groups led by Roy Hargrove and David Sanchez. He is just as gifted a composer, if not better. I say that without any reservation whatsoever. If his name was John Johnson or Lou Dimaggio, there'd be no question that he'd be a strong presence at Jazz festivals and would be booked at places like Yoshi's, Jazz Alley, Blues Alley, Hothouse, Birdland, Blue Note, Iridium and other high profile venues. But his name is Diego Maroto who hails from and studied in Mexico and I hate to say it, but it's more than likely he and his Jazz compadres will get lumped into some type of World/Jazz or Latin/Jazz category and be treated as an avant- garde act without having heard the music. If you listen to his music, it's no different than what any other mainstream Jazz artist is doing today. Only his music is truly exceptional. One of his compositions entitled MUNDO PARALELO is as hard bop as any Eddie Henderson & Sonny Fortune CD or as funky as any Weather Report or Taj Mahal recording out there. In another composition, ANOTHER MINOR BLUES, bass player Agustmn Bernal takes a solo that puts him in the pantheon of great bassists on the scene today like Boris Koslov, John Benitez, Dwayne Burno and John Pattitucci, amongst others.
These cats are not playing Latin Jazz or Avant-Garde Jazz or any other style of Jazz except JAZZ. Punto. Hopefully, they'll be back in the USA in the near future so those of you who are interested can check them out. I sure hope that their performance @ Dizzy's made people take notice and allow them some opportunity to perform some more in the USA. Especially in New York (For selfish reasons.)
Also, the room at Dizzy's Club Coca Cola is A#1. It just replaced Birdland as the best listening room to hear and experience jazz. Although a $30 admission may seem somewhat steep, it is reasonable considering the qualtiy of the musicianship and just the overall vibe of the place. No lousy sound problenms or amp feedback in this place. 100% Perfect acoustics all around. And the view overlooking Cnetral Park ain't bad either. Great food as well. Club Dizzy's will defintiely be one of my regular hang out spots from now on. And if that wasn't enough, after the 2 sets of the double bill featuring Antonio Sanchez Group and Diego Maroto Sextet, audiences were treated to a late night after hours session with the John Benitez Quartet that featured Ernesto Simpson (drums), The Rodriguez Bros: Robert (Piano) and Mike (Trumpet), and the great John Benitez (bass).
Check out Dizzy's Club Coca Cola if you haven't already. Gonzalo Rubalcaba will be coming through and in January '05, the greatest vibes player in jazz of my generation, Mr. Stefon Harris and his Blackout ensemble.
BTW-It is very evident, that Latin Jazz is well-represented at the new home for Jazz @ Lincoln Center. Upcoming concert performances and educational clinics and discussion panels will be revolving around Latin Jazz in January of 2005. Even the menu is well represented (Anyone ever try a Cubano-Bop BBQ Steak Sandwich?)
Check it out for yourself, next time you're at Dizzy's.
And if you're able to find it, check out Diego Maroto's new CD entitled MUNDO PARALELO...
El saxofonista más energético y arriesgado del panorama jazzístico del país, Diego Maroto, llega a la escena local. Los alientos fogosos de Maroto encallarán el próximo 17 de marzo, a las 21:00 horas, en el Hard Rock Live, dentro del ciclo Jazz Alternativo Guadalajara. Un día antes, Maroto ofrecerá un show case y entrevista en vivo en el programa radiofónico Solo Jazz, conducido por Sara Valenzuela, que se transmitirá desde el restaurante Tinto y Blanco. Ahí la entrada será libre.Pero Diego Maroto no llega solo: con él arribará una pandilla de algunos nuevos héroes mexicanos del jazz, con quienes se confabula para ejecutar este estilo de música en la más amplia, pura y contemporánea de sus acepciones. Aliados incondicionales del bebop, estos músicos recorren los escenarios desde 2002 bajo el simple alias de Diego Maroto Sexteto. Al lado del sax tenor y soprano, oriundo de la Ciudad de México, ejecutan Mark Aanderud (piano), Agustín Bernal (contrabajo), Gabriel Puentes (batería), Francisco Lelo de Larrea (guitarra) y Rey David Alejandre (trombón).Diego Maroto y sus colegas regresan a la carga en los escenarios aztecas, luego de haber marcado un precedente en la historia del jazz mexicano: estuvieron en la ciudad de Nueva York durante seis días consecutivos, en el Dizzy's Club, en Lincoln Center, Nueva York; en cinco de esos shows el boletaje se agotó. El conjunto recibió alentadoras críticas de los medios especializados y fue blanco de los halagos del maestro Richard Blondet, en una carta dirigida al foro Jazz Mestizo. Diego Maroto es un genio... Sabía que tenía la técnica y un entendimiento profundo del lenguaje del jazz, pero este tipo es un monstruo... Estos individuos son tan buenos como los mejores grupos de jazz de Nueva York o tal vez del mundo... “ redactó.Este grupo es convocado por Maroto a principios del año 2002 con el fin de sonar composiciones propias pensadas para esta dotación. El trío de Aanderud, Bernal y Puentes llevaban ya un tiempo trabajando juntos, y fue en la presentación de su disco Common Differences en donde Diego escuchó la sonoridad que estaba buscando para su quinteto.Posteriormente integró al trombonista Rey David Alejandre y al guitarrista Francisco Lelo de Larrea. En sus interpretaciones, el conjunto alterna temas de Maroto con temas originales de cada uno de los integrantes.Anteriormente, Maroto había editado un disco en solitario, Mundo paralelo, en el que se hizo acompañar por músicos invitados que a la postre formarían parte de su sexteto. En ese disco quedaron también grabadas las colaboraciones del trompetista Joe D'Etienne y el piano de Eugenio Toussaint.Desde que se formó, el grupo se ha presentado exitosamente en clubes y festivales de jazz, siendo los más representativos el ciclo de jazz Arte 02 y Jazz en el Bosque, ambos festivales organizados por el INBA (Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes). En Noviembre del 2004, Diego Maroto se presentó con su grupo en el Primer Festival Internacional de Playa del Carmen; posteriormente, en el mismo mes, estuvieron en la ciudad de Nueva York. Por la gran expectativa y el éxito que ha tenido esta agrupación, el sexteto de Diego Maroto se perfila como una de los proyectos más propositivos del jazz en México. Diego Maroto SextetoCiclo Jazz Alternativo GuadalajaraJueves 17 de marzo a las 21:00 horas
Contratiempo Jazz Magazine
Con la intensión de ampliar horizontes para impulsar y motivar a las nuevas generaciones de músicos de jazz a alimentar su visión del mundo, el saxofonista mexicano Diego Maroto realiza gira por Asia.
El próximo miércoles Diego Maroto se presentará en uno de los festivales de música más importantes de Asia, “Mosaic Music Festival”, para continuar con más fechas en Singapore, Kuala Lumpur y en el club de jazz de Bangkok (Tailandia) llamado Saxophone”.
A la fecha, Diego Maroto ha tocado con varios proyectos en el club de jazz en Kuala Lumpur llamado No Black Tie. Estando allá se confirmó su participación en el Java International Jazz Festival (Jacarta, Indonesia), además de haber tocado en los clubes de jazz más importantes de Singapore. Maroto continuará su estadía en Asia por un mes más.
This trio embodies the spontaneous meeting of 3 musical minds in an intimate landscape, driven by sheer joy, passion and abandon for music that is at once free and created for the moment. The music speaks of the artists' dedication and belief in their art, the veins of their musical thoughts intertwining so naturally and organically, sparked with moments of abandon and celebration! From Mexico City to Singapore, and No Black Tie, Kuala Lumpur, it is as though the adventure has just begun! Evelyn Hii, No Black Tie