Arturo O’Farrill is a multi-Grammy winning Cuban-Mexican-American jazz pianist, composer, and leader. Every album released so far by the Arturo O’Farrill Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra has won or been nominated for a Grammy.
Arturo O’Farrill is a multiple Grammy-winning Afro-Cuban Jazz Leader
Arturo eventually became a straight-ahead Jazz pianist. In the 1990s, he started a return to his Latin roots. In 1995, Arturo joined his aging father’s band, the Chico O’Farrill Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra, as pianist and music director. The band started playing Sundays at Birdland in 1997. Arturo became bandleader when his father passed away in 2001.
The same year Wynton Marsalis gave Arturo a chance to form an Afro-Cuban jazz band at Lincoln Center. That became the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, a Jazz big band with a Cuban percussion section.
Their first album Una Noche Inolvidable (Un Unforgettable Night, 2005) earned a Grammy nomination for “Best Traditional Tropical Latin Album.”
The Orchestra left Lincoln Center in 2007. Their second album Song for Chico (2009) won a Grammy for “Best Latin Jazz Album.”
In 2010, O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra made their first trip to Cuba. Their third album 40 Acres and a Burro earned a Grammy nomination for “Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.”
2014’s The Offense of the Drum won a Grammy for “Best Latin Jazz Album.”
Chico O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra keep getting recognized for the powerful way they connect Jazz and Latin. As the band matures, they dig ever deeper into their Latin American roots.
Arturo O’Farrill in NYC
Arturo O’Farrill Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra play their weekly Sunday night gig at Birdland. The band takes a break in August that is filled with the Birdland Latin Jazz Big Band.