This week in Jazz, we discover “Cubop” or Afro-Cuban Jazz. Chico O’ Farrill was a primary influencer in the 1940s and 1950s when this style became prominent. He was born Arturo O’ Farrill to an Irish Father and German mother, October 28, 1921, in Havana Cuba. He was a master trumpeter/composer/arranger who combined European classical and Jazz music with Afro-Cuban rhythms. The Afro Cuban Jazz Suite is his major contribution to the genre. He moved to New York and did work with Benny Goodman. Farrill also composed for Dizzie Gillespie, Charlie Parker and arranged for David Bowie. Farrill was honored with a Grammy nomination for his album “Pure Emotion” in the 1990s. He died in New York in 2001.
Chico O’ Farrill describes Afro-Cuban Jazz as “a very delicate marriage.”