Perujazz is undoubtedly the most stimulating band to come out of Peru over the last few decades. Their work creating, researching, and disseminating Peruvian rhythms fused with contemporary jazz has won them prestige and international acclaim.
All of the members of the band are creators and pioneers of a new type of music that coherently and innovatively integrates the traditional musical roots from the coast, the highlands, and the jungle of Peru with masterly improvisations.
Traditional instruments such as the quena, the zampoña, the cajon, the bongo, and ritual seed pods are combined (without losing their purity) with a tenor sax, an electric bass, an electroacoustic guitar and drums, and harmonized with synthesized electronic sound and effects.
Perujazz reflects, in this fashion, a new image of contemporary Peru: ethnic roots blended with contemporary technique – the ‘primitive’ with the sophisticated.
The music of Perujazz takes us on an intense trip through the diverse landscapes of Peru, and as we listen to it we are hearing the birth of a new sound, that corresponds to today’s Peru, a country whose age-old essence and cultural tradition are like the music of Perujazz, a universal language accesible to everyone.
30 YEARS OF LIVE HISTORY
From early years, Perujazz performed at relevant music venues and festivals: the First Art Biennial in Trujillo, Peru; two concerts in Ecuador organized by Guayasamin Foundation; a tour in Chile as Cultural Ambassadors in 1986, where they came back later in 1991; and also Mar del Jazz Festival in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1986.
Late in 1986, Perujazz went on its first European tour, performing at Messina International Festival in Italy. In Rome, Perujazz recorded a LP for the Instituto Italo Americano, in co-production with RAI. In Madrid, the TV show ‘Show Entre Amigos’, broadcasted by Television Espanola, invited the quartet to appear on one of its episodes; in Barcelona Perujazz performed at the National Conservatory and played at several jazz clubs. The tour ended with two concerts in Paris at la Maison de l’Amerique Latine and UNESCO’S CECIED, the latter with hearty opening words of the renowned writer Julio Ramon Ribeyro.
Positive and sound comments arose from this first European tour which led the band to perform at Umbria Jazz Festival in Italy in 1987, after Sting’s show in front of around twenty thousand people. Afterwards, Perujazz was invited to Montreal Jazz Festival in Canada for two consecutive years (1989 and 1990). In 1990 Perujazz also performed at New Music America Festival in Miami and Festival Cevantino in Mexico.
Tired of living together and overwhelmed by homesickness, the members of Perujazz took a 10 years break until 2001 when they reunited to record ‘Perujazz Live’. This new album attained critical acclaim from the magazine “Musico Pro” and was distributed throughout the US by Cobo Music.
In October 2003, Perujazz played at Teatro Ateneo, Buenos Aires, Argentina, getting positive feedback from the audience. In 2004, the band opened the Latin Cultural Festival in Hamburg, Germany and later performed in Frankfurt, Münster; then Perujazz headed to London representing Peru at the World Travel Market. In 2006, Perujazz changed its line-up once again, after the death of ‘Chocolate’ Algendones and in 2007 released ‘Mundo Nuevo’ (New World). In 2009, Perujazz returns to stage but this time with Abraham Laboriel and including a guitar for the first time in its line-up, played by Andres Prado, which led the band to a new brand music experience. Under this line-up Perujazz recorded ’25 Años’ (25 Years), release that represents the end of a long process of collective creation and reassures the validity of this legendary band. In 2013, they repeated the experience with Laboriel, but this time aiming to recreate a fresh expression of Perujazz, which resulted in bringing in two young but talented musicians: Julio Zavala (bass) and Cesar ‘Pudy’ Ballumbrosio (percussion, violin and Afro-Peruvian tap). This last line-up is considered by the founders, the ideal one after 33 years pursuing the dreamed sound of Perujazz.
- Ecuador (Fundación Guayasamin, 1984)
- Chile (Cultural Ambassadors, 1986 and 1991)
- Argentina (Mar del Jazz Festival, 1986 and Teatro Ateneo, 2003)
- Italy (Messina International Festival, 1986 y Umbria Festival, 1987)
- Spain (Conservatorio de Barcelona, 1986)
- France (Maison de l’Amerique Latine and UNESCO, 1986)
- Canada (Montreal Jazz Festival, 1989 and 1990)
- U.S.A. (New Music America Festival, 1990)
- Mexico (Festival de Cervantino, 1990)
- Gemany (Hamburg Latin Cultural Festival, 2004)
- England (World Travel Market, 2004)
- Bolivia (Festijazz, La Paz and Sucre, 2015)
- U.S.A. – Chicago (Old Town School of Folk Music, 2016)
- U.S.A. – New York (Subrosa, 2016)
- U.S.A. – Los Angeles (East Los Angeles College, 2016)
Manongo MujicaFounder / Percussion and Drums
Drummer, percussionist, composer and visual artist. Manongo is best known as one of the most representative experimental musicians in Peru. Although he took formal classes with Klaus Stein from the Symphonic Orchestra of Vienna, Manongo considers the sea as his main teacher. He founded bands such as 'Los Mad's', 'Solos' and 'Tribal'. He was invited as guest speaker at Princeton University with the topic 'Presence of the Rhythm in Arts'. As lecturer Manongo has participated at Inn Roads The Americas (Miami) and at Strictly Mundial Festival (Salvador de Bahia). Pioneer of free improvisation in Peru in the mid ‘70s, Manongo has performed on numerous stages around the world. He has composed diverse soundtracks for films and presented shows which bring together music, visuals and dance.
Jean Pierre MagnetFounder / Saxophones
He studied at the National Conservatory of Buenos Aires and at Berklee School of Music in Boston.
Jean Pierre has performed with prestigious Latin American musicians and organized major international jazz festivals in Lima. He is a founding member of Perujazz and also created the 'Gran Banda', 'Wayruro' and 'Serenata de los Andes', the latter has earned Jean Pierre the title of 'Ambassador of Peru Country Brand', awarded by Peruvian government and also of 'Best Artist of the Year' for two consecutive years, awarded by the major journal of the country.
Guitarist. He Studied at the National Conservatory of Music (Lima), The Avellaneda School of Popular Music (Buenos Aires) and the Trinity College of Music (London), specializing in jazz and Latin American Guitar.
As a composer, his work has been recognized and documented for the national archive in Peru. As a player he has led his own bands in numerous appearances at jazz and music festivals in Peru, Argentina and England, on radio and television. He is currently working on a film in the US, examining religious music in South America.
Bassist, music arranger and composer. He has cooperated in several music projects along with major artists of Peruvian scene. His creativity has earned him many awards such as III Contest of Young Composers of the Universidad Catolica del Peru and the Ministry of Culture (2013) and the IX Contest of Composition of the British Cultural Center in Lima. His projects explore the sounds of Afro-peruvian culture within the jazz universe.
César 'Pudy' BallumbrosioPercussionist, violinist and zapateador
Coming from the most representative Afro-Peruvian family, Cesar 'Pudy' Ballumbrosio got the rhythm in his blood. Percussionist, violinist and zapateador, Pudy has brought back to life Chocolate Algendones' legacy, with a unique style though. His extremely captivating charismatic performance blows the audience's mind and gives the band a new dimension to explore on stage.
Pudy is also a photographer, graphic designer and has explored acting in 2014 in a Peruvian film 'Joe Pecado'. Recently he and his family members were chosen to perform privately for the Rolling Stones, at the backstage of their concert in Peru.