2015 Healdsburg Jazz Festival – Day 5

Free Tuesday Concert in the Healdsburg Plaza

tanaka-posterWhen: Tuesday, June 2
Where: Healdsburg Plaza, Healdsburg Ave. at Matheson St.

Time: 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Free: “Tuesday Concerts in the Plaza” 

Ritmos Unidos

One of the highlights of the summer in Healdsburg are the Tuesdays in the Plaza, free two-hour concerts by artists from bluegrass to jazz, country to ethnic. For the past decade-plus the first Tuesday in June has been reserved for artists from the Healdsburg Jazz Festival, and this year we’re pleased to bring Ritmos Unidos to town.

Ritmos Unidos, with Michael Spiro (center)
Ritmos Unidos, with Michael Spiro (center)

Ritmos Unidos is led by Grammy-nominated percussionist Michael Spiro, who maintains connections to his Bay Area roots but has led this powerful ensemble as a professor in the Jazz Studies Program with the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. Students, faculty and alum from that esteemed music school— Mike Mixtacki and Joe Galvin teaming up with Spiro in the percussion section, including steel drums, tenor saxophonist Nate Johnson, trumpeter Pat Harbison, guitarist Joel Tucker, pianist Jamaal Baptiste and bassist Jeremy Allen — will be flown out especially for this concert, thanks to the generosity of Indiana University.

The band’s recent eponymously titled album on Patois, called “fine and tight” in a DownBeat magazine review, taps deeply into the diverse grooves and stylistic textures of Latin America, unifying rhythms from mother Cuba to Trinidad and beyond. Spiro also plays in Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet (June 4), so we wouldn’t be surprised to see the tall trombonist take the gazebo stage. Dancing will be unavoidable.