The 88 well-tuned drums of Omar Sosa • A documentary film premiere
Omar Sosa’s 88 Well-Tuned Drums is a feature-length documentary about the life and music of Cuban-born pianist and composer Omar Sosa (b. 1965). In-depth interviews with Omar Sosa, archival video and stills, and, of course, plenty of music form the backbone of the film, with animated segments bringing bold, colorful movement to Sosa’s stories, especially the former for which there is little support material.
The film traces Sosa’s personal and artistic origins from his birth and childhood in Camagüey, his education at the conservatory in Havana, his military service in Angola during that country’s long civil war, and his eventual move to Ecuador where, for a some time he wrote, arranged and performed. commercial jingles.
Sosa’s story continues with a fateful mid-’90s move to the United States, a stint as a sought-after sideman on the Bay Area’s burgeoning Latin jazz scene, and a partnership with the longtime manager Scott Price which continues to this day. In his 25+ years as a solo artist, Omar Sosa has released over 30 albums and received four Grammy nominations and three Latin Grammy nominations. Omar often gives 80 to 100 concerts on six continents each year.
Sosa is known for his deeply personal style and musical influences and collaborators as diverse as his travel itinerary. As Eugene Holley wrote in a 2004 Village Voice piece that inspired the film’s title, “Sosa’s pianisms evoke distant echoes of McCoy Tyner’s power, Keith Jarrett’s whimsical improvisational flights, and harmonies Thelonious Monk’s angular drums, turning the piano into 88 well-tuned drums.”
April 23, 2022 • 5:00 p.m.
American Film Festival
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