Omar Sosa (born April 10, 1965, in Camagüey, Cuba) is a composer, bandleader, and jazz pianist.
Sosa began studying marimba at age eight, then switched to piano at the Escuela Nacional de Musica in Havana, where he studied jazz. Sosa moved to Quito, Ecuador, in 1993, then San Francisco, California, in 1995. In San Francisco he became deeply involved in the local Latin jazz scene and began a long collaboration with percussionist John Santos. He also made a series of recordings with producer Greg Landau, including the ground-breaking Oaktown Irawo, featuring Tower of Power drummer Dave Garibaldi, Cuban saxophonist Yosvany Terry and Cuban percussionist Jesus Diaz. Sosa and Landau recorded with Carlos "Patato" Valdes and Pancho Quinto and worked on several film scores. Around 1999 Sosa moved to Barcelona, Spain.
In January 2011, Omar Sosa won The 10th Annual Independent Music Awards in the Jazz Album category for Ceremony.
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.
Omar recently collaborated once again with Greg Landau for a CD with Peruvian singer Susana Baca, deconstructing the music of Cuban legend Bola de Nieve. His newest band, Afreecanos, combines Afro Pop, jazz, and a variety of European instruments. The band, which includes musicians from Africa, Cuba, Brazil, and France, released a CD in 2009 and went on a world tour in early 2010. ClearartWide ThumbFanart Banner User Comments