Composer-pianist-bandleader Omar Sosa was born in 1965 in Camagüey, Cuba’s largest inland city. At age eight, Omar began studying percussion and marimba at the music conservatory in Camagüey; in Havana, as a teenager, he took up piano at the prestigious Escuela Nacional de Música, and completed his formal education at the Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana. Among his influences, Omar cites traditional Afro-Cuban music, European classical composers (including Chopin, Bartok, and Satie), Monk, Coltrane, Parker, Oscar Peterson, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Keith Jarrett, Chucho Valdés, and the pioneering Cuban jazz group Irakere. Moving in 1993 to Ecuador, Omar immersed himself in the folkloric traditions of Esmeraldas, the northwest coast region whose African heritage includes the distinctive marimba tradition. He relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1995, and soon invigorated the Latin jazz scene with his adventurous writing and percussive style.
He has played with a number of world musicians all around the globe, and often collaborates with those outside the jazz and Afro-Cuban traditions. Sosa mixes jazz influences alongside Latin rhythms, North African percussions and spoken word/rap lyrics. He also references classical music. Political and spiritual, he describes his music as an expression of humanism and Santería. On various projects his sounds have ranged from pleasant and melodic, big Latin band, piano improvisation, world music, to free jazz and avant-garde.
Light in The Sky
Sad Meeting -Omar Sosa Quarteto AfroCubano
My Three Notes
_ Under african skies
PAOLO FRESU, OMAR SOSA TRILOK GURTU
Alma -Paolo Fresu & Omar Sosa
Zeus’ Desires Paolo Fresu & Omar Sosa