Born: September 6, 1952 Primary Instrument: Piano
Rochester's MAMBO KINGS, together since 1995, are enjoying great success as Upstate New York's foremost Latin jazz ensemble, and have rapidly earned a national reputationfor their explosive blend of Afro Cuban rhythms and jazz improvisation.
Since their orchestral debut in 1997 with the Rochester Philharmonic and Conductor Jeff Tyzik, Mambo Kings have appeared in Pops concerts with orchestras in Baltimore, Vancouver (BC), Winnipeg, Dallas, Naples (FL) and Portland (OR), among many others, performing original compositions and arrangements by pianist Richard DeLaney.
As a quintet, they have appeared as featured soloists at the 2003 and 2008 Rochester International Jazz Fest, the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, the Music In The Mountains Festival in Colorado and the Lewiston (NY) Jazz Fest.
The 2008 season featured performances with the Detroit Symphony, the Buffalo Philharmonic, and return trips to Vancouver and Music In The Mountains, besides appearances with the RPO at CMAC and Corn Hill Landing on a barge on the Genesee River.
Mambo Kings released their third self-produced recording, Nostalgia, in July of 2008. Nostalgia, along with their previous releases --Live! (2005) and Marinera (2003)-- continues to receive radio airplay in major markets throughout North America and Puerto Rico.
Pianist and Musical Director Richard DeLaney has been active as an arranger and composer in Rochester since earning a Master's Degree from the Eastman School in 1978. He was musical director for Orquesta La Muralla for fifteen years before forming Mambo Kings in 1992. He has taught piano and jazz piano at the Hochstein School Of Music since 1985 and has directed the jazz ensemble program there since 2001.
One of Rochester's fine bands performs a range of originals, a few standards (including Summertime and My Favorite Things, which have become jazz evergreens); and a trio of tunes from famed jazz repertoires, Chick Corea's Armando's Rumba, Miles Davis' Seven Steps To Heaven and Cedar Walton's N.P.S. The mambo aspects of the band come from a first-rate rhythm section -- Tio Antonetti and Freddy Colon on various drums, congas, timbales and bongos, and Hector Diaz on bass. . .
The musicality of this band is always first-rate, but members are at their best when the music soars over sheer rhythmic joy,as in Tio's Tune and Sunny.
Jack Garner, Rochester Democrat And Chronicle