New York based Colombian pianist/composer Gabriel Guerrero is a classical trained pianist/composer who comes from a new generation of contemporary musicians emerging in the Jazz scene. Addressing music for its drive, direction and roots rather than styles, Gabriel has gone from South American rhythms, Contemporary Improvisation, Avant Garde to the traditions of Be-Bop and Jazz. Gabriel exalts his music with a high understanding of its roots bringing his experience and diversity to the table. Having started piano at age five, giving concerts and TV appearances at age nine, Gabriel has performed in Jazz Festivals in South America, USA, Asia and is a high demand musician in the scene today.
As a leader The Gabriel Guerrero Trio explores the links between modern jazz and the music of South American specially from Colombia. Continuous work from the trio and trio + guests is currently in progress for future release. As a sideman Gabriel can be heard on the recently released Bruce Gertz Quintet recordings ”Reptilian Fantasies” and ”It Wasn’t Me” featuring Jerry Bergonzi, and ”Panama Suite” (Artist Share 2008) by the Danilo Perez Big Band featuring Danilo Perez on electric piano and Gabriel on acoustic piano plus a 19-piece big band.
“Gabriel is a real improviser”
“One of our most talented performers and composers”
“Gabriel is an intelligent player”
He has performed with Paquito D’ Rivera, Dave Holland, Steve Coleman, Roy Hargrove, George Garzone, Mike Mainieri, Esperanza Spalding, Adam Nusbaum, Dafnis Prieto, John Riley, Mike Clark, Bob Moses, Michael Spiro, Anthony Branker, Gregg Bissonette, Michael Wimberley, Jamey Haddad, and recently performing regular gigs with the Jerry Bergonzi and the Bruce Gertz Quartets. He has also put together various musical projects such as SURCA, a multi-cultural quartet dedicated to expanding on South American rhythms and avant-garde jazz.
In Colombia Gabriel studied classical piano from age five with Maestro Karol Bermudez before moving to New York in 1998 to study at Hunter College winning the Concerto/Aria Competition performing Mozarts Piano Concerto K444 with the Hunter Symphony Orchestra. In year 2000 Gabriel won a scholarship to study at New England Conservatory earning both a Bachelors and a Masters degree studying with Danilo Perez, Steve Lacy, Fred Hersch, Jerry Bergonzi, and Charlie Banacos. Other teachers include with Ran Blake, James Moody, Rufus Reid, George Russell, and Joe Lovano.
Gabriel had TV appearances since age nine thought his teens in Colombian TV performing solo piano and later on performing with his Quartet in 1998. He has appeared in Boston public TV several times as part of Sofia Rei Kutsovitis band, and performing with Danilo Perez Big Band in a live radio broadcast by PBS. Gabriel has participated in Jazz festivals in Colombia, and USA such as Newport Jazz Festival, Cape Cod Jazz Festival, John Coltrane Memorial Concert, Lily Pad Piano Festival, IAJE Jazz Convention, Jazz al Parque, and performed in important venues such as Jazz Gallery, Jordan Hall, as well as taught clinics in Berklee College of Music, New England Conservatory, and Universities in Colombia.
Gabriel is deeply attracted to the idea of unpredictability and surprise in jazz, which he feels is absolutely critical to artistic expression. Saxophonist Jerry Bergonzi appreciates this adventurous quality in Gabriel’s playing. “Gabriel Guerrero brings fresh ideas to his music, he says, When I think he is going left he goes right and when I think he is going right he goes left. He always surprises me, which I love. He brings his Latin Culture to the music in his own inventive way. He is a real improviser.”