Ignacio Berroa
July 8, 1953
© Bernhard Castiglioni. - www.drummerworld.com

Ignacio Berroa
Grammy Award winner and international drum star Ignacio Berroa has been recognized by many as one of the greatest drummers of our times.  His numerous contributions to the American music scene have earned him a place among a very selective group of artists known to have set new musical trends for the 20th century.

Jazz Legend Dizzy Gillespie best defined Ignacio as:

..."The only Latin drummer in the world, in the history of American music that intimately knows both worlds; his native Afro-Cuban music as well as Jazz..."

Highly respected among his peers, Ignacio's musicianship and versatility have enabled him to build a successful career by gaining the recognition of some of the most important artists in the business.

Ignacio Berroa was born in Havana Cuba on July 8,1953. Following his father's footsteps he began his musical education as a classical violinist.

But his life changed the day he heard albums by Nat King Cole and Glenn Miller. It was then that he realized he wanted to play that music and pursued that dream with a passion, taking his first drum lesson at age 11.

He studied at the National School of Arts and subsequently at Havana's National Conservatory, beginning his professional career in 1970. By 1975 Ignacio Berroa had become Cuba's most sought after drummer.

After moving to New York in 1980 Ignacio met and had the privilege of working with musicians of the stature of Mario Bauza, among others. It was Mario who introduced him to the late Bebop master Dizzy Gillespie.

In August 1981 Dizzy officially invited Ignacio to join his quartet.  Later he would also become an integral part of all the important bands Gillespie assembled during that decade, such as "The Dizzy Gillespie's 70th Anniversary Big Band", "Dizzy Gillespie All Star Big Band" and the "Grammy Award" winner "United Nations Orchestra".

But Ignacio's contributions to the arts have not been limited to perform on stage. As an educator he first made his mark by becoming an Adjunct Faculty Instructor at Florida International University from 1991 to 1994. Later in 1995, he released his video "Mastering The Art of Afro-Cuban Drumming" under Warner Bros Publications , deemed by Downbeat magazine as the best instructional video of the year.

His latest book "Groovin' In Clave", distributed by Carl Fischer is a great tool to learn independence, Afro-Cuban grooves as well as mixing the Rumba clave with other styles like Rock, Funk and Brazilian.

Ignacio has also conducted clinics and master classes all over the world and has recorded and played with musicians of the stature of McCoy Tyner, Freddie Hubbard, Wynton Marsalis, Jackie Mc Lean, Clark Terry, James Moody, Milt Jackson, Ron Carter, Charlie Haden, Eddie Gomez, Phil Woods, Michael Brecker, Joe Lovano, Jon Faddis, Jack Bruce, Jaco Pastorius, Tito Puente, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Lalo Schifrin, Chico Bouarque, Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa, Lenny Andrade, Ivan Lins, Joao Bosco, Slide Hampton's Jazz Masters Big Band, Carnegie Hall Big Band, Lincoln Center Orchestra, WDR Big Band and BBC Big Band, just to name a few.

Bennie Wallace Quartet:
Bennie Wallace - Adam Rafferty - Bill Huntington - Ignacio Berroa
European Tour 2008

© Bernhard Castiglioni. - www.drummerworld.com

by Ignacio Berroa
Combining Jazz and Rumba for a New Sound on the Drumset
Author of the highly successful "Groovin in Clave", renowned Cuban Drummer Ignacio Berroa's latest book with CD expands on the concepts introduced in the earlier book.The object this time is to integrate aspects of Jazz-Style drumming with the Afro-Cuban inflected rock and funk rhythms that were explored in Groovin’ in Clave. By combining elements from both books, the player will be able to move freely among several styles of music – Jazz, Rock, Funk and Latin – adding an exciting depth and variety to the playing by letting the musical styles be both separate and fused, depending on the musical situation and the drummer’s own inspiration.

The CD is designed to demonstrate the various grooves in the book and includes play-along songs that give the player chances to use the grooves in context and become a part of a great sounding band.

by Ignacio Berroa
"Ignacio Berroa's book is destined to become a classic". PAS MAGAZINE
A great book to learn how to apply the Afro- Cuban clave to almost every style
of music.

Combining Afro-Cuban independence, Rock, Funk, Shuffle, Afro-Cuban and Brazilian rhythms for drum set with the Rumba Clave.

This book will show you how to combine all styles of music. First you must learn clave and make it part of your internal musical vocabulary. Then you'll use it in practical grooves, add 6/8 rhythms, and finally combine all styles of music. You will be able to superimpose this feel in all styles of music and then incorporate your new music vocabulary in an actual playing experience with the CD!

Ignacio Berroa - Roy Haynes

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Ignacio Berroa - Charlie Haden

Ignacio Berroa & Bernhard Castiglioni

thanks for your visit!

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