October 8th, 23h30

Guillermo Klein . Voice / Piano
Miguel Zenón . Sax Alto
Bill McHenry . Sax Tenor
Chris Cheek . Sax Baritone
Diego Urcola . Trumpet
Taylor Haskins . Trumpet
Richard Nant . Trumpet/Percussion
Sandro Tomasi . Trombone
Fernando Huergo .Electric Bass
Wolfgang Muthspiel . Guitar
Jeff Ballard . Drums

The craft of composition has been a part of Guillermo Klein’s life since his childhood in Argentina.  Klein’s father presented him with a piano when he turned 11 years old and, inspired by the legendary Argentinean composer Astor Piazzolla, he promptly began his experimentation with writing songs.  Klein left Argentina to attend Berklee College of Music after hearing a moving speech by the former dean Gary Burton about his relationship working with Piazzolla.  Klein intended to study classical music on his arrival but found himself among peers that were passionate about jazz.

The music of Wayne Shorter provided the bridge from classical to jazz studies.  Being a fan of unique harmonic expression, Klein was easily drawn to the work of this master composer who is deemed to be one of the most intriguing harmonic architects in jazz.  Klein was also able to develop a talented network of musical friends, many of which came to Berklee from South America.  This group of colleagues provided the framework for what would eventually become Klein’s main musical voice, the Big Van large ensemble that would later become Los Guachos.  After graduating from Berklee, Klein moved to New York City like many of his fellow graduates.  He settled into Greenwich Village and quickly became associated with a jazz club called Smalls where he established a weekly engagement with his 17 piece Big Van band that incorporated musicians living in New York as well as commuters from Boston.  Smalls was critical in fostering a community of young artists that would ultimately be some of the most influential voices of modern jazz.

Klein later scaled the band down to a more streamlined 11 piece unit that began to be known as Los Guachos (roughly translated, the bastards).  The band continued to develop with the help of residences at Smalls and, later, the Jazz Standard.  After recording an album that was ultimately shelved, Klein was able to find a home with Sunnyside Records where he has been ever since.  The label soon released two CDs by Los Guachos: ”Los Guachos II” (1999) and “Los Guachos III” (2002).

Klein moved back to Argentina in the early fall of 2000 with his wife.  While in Argentina, Klein made a recording alongside local musicians, “Una Nave” (Sunnyside, 2005).  Since then he has released a series of critically acclaimed CDs with Los Guachos including: ”Live in Barcelona” (Sunnyside, 2005), “Filtros” (Sunnyside, 2008), “Carrera” (Sunnyside, 2012) and their latest, “Cristal” (Sunnyside, 2019).  Other important recordings include his work as a composer and/or arranger on “Solar Return Suite” (with the MIT Wind Ensemble), ”Domador de Huellas” (Sunnyside, 2010), “Bienestan” (Sunnyside 2011) with Aaron Goldberg and Miguel Zenon’s Grammy-nominated, ”Alma Aldentro”.

In addition to teaching composition in Buenos Aires, Klein has given master classes and seminars throughout Europe, including the Jazz Institute of Berlin, Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Jazz Schule Basel, and Le Mirail in Toulouse.

Text: Guillermo Klein