Jacques Schwarz-Bart

Jacques Schwarz-Bart. (Image via Americas Society video)

Music of the Americas: Ensembles

The last week of En Casa in 2021 is dedicated to musical groups that approach traditional popular music with fresh ears.

En Casa closes out 2021 with three music groups that combine jazz and contemporary sensibilities with traditional music from Argentina and Guadeloupe: Tropilla Ranquel and Jacques Schwarz-Bart Quintet.

Recuerdos returns to Miami to remember C4 Trio's first U.S. concert in 2012.

Tropilla Ranquel

Monday, December 20, 10 a.m.

Argentine folk music group Tropilla Ranquel explores the popular music of their country and Latin America in a search to connect with the members' cultures and identity. The group explores folk music rhythms with traditional instruments such as guitars, charangos, Cuban tres, sikus, and quenas, as well as instruments associated with rock and jazz, such as the electric bass and drumset. Tropilla has shared the stage with leading Argentine folk musicians throughout the country. The band's members, guitarists Martín Pérez and Silvia Fernández, wind players Pablo Ponce and Juan Pablo Álvarez, percussionist Diego Frescura, and bassist Lucas González Yancamil, born in Buenos Aires, La Rioja, and Jujuy, are also educators dedicated to the promotion of traditional music. The name Tropilla Ranquel pays homage to one of the Indigenous peoples of the pampas region, and to the wind instruments that play a prominent role in the ensemble's music. Ranquel comes from the Mapuche word rankulche, meaning "people from the reeds."

Jacques Schwarz-Bart Quintet

Tuesday, December 21, 10 a.m.

Born in Guadeloupe, Jacques Schwarz-Bart is a saxophonist, composer, and educator. He has released seven albums as composer and bandleader and produced another twenty for a variety of artists. He also appears in over 150 recordings by leading names in jazz, including Roy Hargrove, Danilo Pérez, John Scofield, D'Angelo, Erykah Badu, John Legend, and many others. Schwarz-Bart has taught master classes over the world and is currently on faculty at Berklee College of Music. Schwarz-Bart started playing saxophone at 24 and after three years of self-teaching, left his position in France's Senate to attend Berklee College of Music and subsequently moved to New York. In 2005, he released his first project as a leader, Sone Ka La, which revisits the music of Guadeloupe through the prism of jazz and won worldwide critical acclaim. His latest release, Jazz Racine Haiti, opened new musical paths in modern jazz rooted in voodoo music. Schwarz-Bart is a Knight of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, France's recognition to those who have made significant contributions to the arts and literature. He is the laureate of the Bernheim Award for the Arts for 2017.

Schwarz-Bart recorded "New Padjanbel" with his quintet, in which he is joined by Debo Ray, Domas Zeromskas, Ciaran Fontenot, and Ivanna Cuesta-Gonzalez. Padjanbel is a traditional rhythm in the Guadeloupean gwo-ka musical tradition.

Recuerdos: C4 Trio in Miami in 2012

Wednesday, December 22, 10 a.m.

C4 Trío is an ensemble of three Venezuelan cuatro players: Jorge Glem, Hector Molina, and Edward Ramírez, along with bassist Rodner Padilla. The cuatro is the national instrument of Venezuela—a small four-string guitar mostly used in llanera music, the traditional style of the plains of Colombia and Venezuela. The group won a Latin Grammy in 2014 and has brought their virtuosic music, with improvisations that go through jazz and folk to stages across the world.

In April 2012, Americas Society brought them to the United States for two concerts, one at the Colony Theatre in Miami and one at our hall in New York.

Today, we share a previously unreleased version of Aquiles Báez's "Para mis hermanos," recorded live in Miami.


The MetLife Foundation Music of the Americas concert series is made possible by the generous support of Presenting Sponsor MetLife Foundation.

The Fall 2021 Music program is also supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the Howard Gilman Foundation.

Howard Gilman Foundation

C4 Trio's concert in Miami was made possible with support from HBO Latin America and presented in collaboration with The Rhythm Foundation, the City of Miami, and Miami-Dade College. In-kind support provided by Banco Central de Venezuela.

HBO Latin America