Order "The Time Is Now",
CD - 17 €, shipping - 3 €
With this new recording, Ramon Valle takes on the role of musical time traveler, as he experiences and interprets, from an up close and personal vantage, the music that is happening today. His inspiration came from watching music videos with his children; Dayla, 7, and Fabio, 10. Younger artists like Rihanna, Bruno Mars, various rappers, and Michael Jackson, who he describes as ‘the greatest.’ “That gave me the idea to explore what it is that moves this timeless generation. And what they are trying to express with their music.”
Constantly searching for freedom and communication in his compositions and original arrangements, he set off on an odyssey in search of the source, which he says, “functions as the engine”, exploring with his third eye, fine-tuned ears and heart. “Children are only interested in the present, not the past nor the future. This music is about right now.
All of the compositions are connected to this theme, with nine originals penned by the piano virtuoso. “I didn’t want to go from tune to tune, so the challenge was to listen, then create something from a nice groove, so I could take the music further, and transform it to something else.” An example of his musical alchemy is “Ya Ves,” a popular tune by Pablo Milanés, from the early 1980s. “I did the arrangements and translated it through my timeless binoculars,” he says, with a big grin. Michael Jackson’s megahit, “Don’t Stop til you Get Enough,” sounds like a deconstruction of the familiar evolving into a joyous new interpretation. “Te Extraño” (“Dancing with my Mother”), is dedicated to Valle’s mother, who passed away in the summer of 2017. “After I heard that she was not anymore in this world, I sat behind my piano and this piece arrived completely in one improvisation. I saw myself dancing with my mother to a nice slow Son Cha, like we always used to do at home or at a party. Two months later, after losing my father, I added the trumpet line, because he played the trumpet, and I wanted to have them together again. It’s like he is playing for us as we dance.” He says that his composition “For my Father “is more interpretive, more abstract. As my parents grew older they were even more in love. My father never wanted to be far from his princess.” Valle has assembled a stalwart trio comprised of bassist Omar Rodriguez Calvo, a compadre from Matanzas, Cuba, Dutch drummer Jamie Peet, with trumpeter Roy Hargrove as special guest. He “crossed paths with the trumpet genius in Havana in 1997” when he was recording “Crisol,” a Latin Grammy Winner.” But their first meeting was at the North Sea Jazz Festival in 2000, after Hargrove heard Valle’s trio outside a rehearsal room, and invited them to join him during his set: “We’re like brothers. We feel what we’re playing. I am very happy that finally our friendship and admiration is recorded in music, on this CD.”