Many years ago I found myself newly arrived in Seattle with my brand-new BA in Music. By virtue of a happy accident, I found myself participating in a concert of Afro-Cuban sacred music. San Francisco-based pianist-singer Rebecca Mauleón came up to perform the akpwón (lead vocal) part. As I watched her take total command of the piece, and as the call and response singing cascaded through that church, I knew that I wanted to pursue Cuban music. I shelved my classical music pursuits and began a long and rewarding study of Cuban percussion, dance, folkloric and popular music.
I've been invited by the Seattle Peace Chorus to sing akpwón on that same piece, "Orin Odara" on November 18th and 19th. I'm excited to bring this full circle, playing the piece I was originally inspired by along side several of the musicians I began my studies with. And this time, I'll be standing in Rebecca's shoes!