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Newport Jazz Festival

Listen Now: Miguel Zenon's Puerto Rican Songbook In Concert

Miguel Zenón performs with his Puerto Rican Songbook group, including Luis Perdomo on piano (left), on the Quad stage during the Newport Jazz Festival.
Erik Jacobs for NPR

Miguel Zenón performs with his Puerto Rican Songbook group, including Luis Perdomo on piano (left), on the Quad stage during the Newport Jazz Festival.

Miguel Zenon's Puerto Rican Songbook, Live In Concert: Newport Jazz 2011

August 8, 2011Hear a rare public performance of the alto's adaptations of his parents' favorite music.

Miguel Zenón performs with his Puerto Rican Songbook group, including Luis Perdomo on piano (left), on the Quad stage during the Newport Jazz Festival.
Erik Jacobs for NPR

Miguel Zenón performs with his Puerto Rican Songbook group, including Luis Perdomo on piano (left), on the Quad stage during the Newport Jazz Festival.

Set List

  • Silencio
  • Alma Adentro
  • Olas y Arenas
  • Perfume de Gardenias
  • Tiemblas

Lately, the alto saxophonist Miguel Zenón has been listening to some of his parents' favorite music. That is, he's adapted a handful of classic popular songs from his native Puerto Rico for his jazz quartet. And on his forthcoming album Alma Adentro, he even contracted his friend Guillermo Klein to write backing arrangements for a 10-piece woodwind section. Lush and verdant — like the tropical isle which inspired them — the charts saw a rare public performance at Newport's central Quad Stage.

Personnel: Miguel Zenón, alto saxophone; Luis Perdomo, piano; Hans Glawischnig, bass; Henry Cole, drums. With Nathalie Joachim, flute; Jessica Schmitz, flute; Domenica Fossati, flute; Alexey Gorokholinsky, clarinet; Christof Knoche, bass clarinet; Katie Scheele, oboe; Keve Wilson, English horn; Brad Balliett, bassoon; Jennifer Kessler, French horn; Ian Donald, French horn. Guillermo Klein, conductor.

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About The Festival

The Newport Jazz Festival, was founded by jazz pianist George Wein in 1954 as the first outdoor music festival of its kind devoted entirely to jazz, and is now universally acknowledged as the grandfather of all jazz festivals. For information on attending this year's Festival, visit their official website.

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