Mathisen & Hoff feat. Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez
October 2017 Horacio “el Negro” Hernandez will tour in the South of Norway with Per Mathisen (bass) and Jan Gunnar Hoff on keys. The trio will also record an album in Barxeta, the studio of Losen Records.
Horacio “el Negro” Hernandez is regarded as one of the best drummers in the world. His contribution to music is immense, having recorded and performed with many bands and top class artists. This 1997 Grammy award winner has performed with music greats like McCoy Tyner, Michel Camilo, Carlos Santana, Stevie Winwood and notable Latin American ensembles, the Tropi-Jazz All Stars of the late Tito Puente.
Horacio Hernandez was born in 1963 in Havana Cuba. His love for music can be attributed to the music environment he grew around. His family had a strong background of music. His grandfather was a trumpeter who played in bands like the famous Septeto National. His father and brother were also great music lovers who would spend a lot of time listening to music. Since birth, Hernandez’s nick name has been El Negro or ‘the black’, a name is commonly identified with till today.
Later on Paquito D’Rivera called on jazz legend Dizzy Gillespie to help El Negro. El Negro almost got the visa but Dizzy died as the process went on so El Negro was stuck in Italy for two and half year. However, he did not cry over spilt milk and instead chose to keep on playing in Italy, doing gigs around Rome. In 1993, he was allowed to move to New York on condition that he would comply with the travel sanctions imposed on Cuba, so he had to turn down many offers of tours to South America. This however proved to be beneficial since he had a chance to increase his studio work and got a chance to play with jazz greats like Dave Valentin, Paquo Vazquez, Daniel Ponce, Ed Simon and Dizzy Gillespie’s United Nations Orchestra, this time under the leadership of Paquito D’Rivera. Later when travel restrictions were removed, Horacio ‘El Negro’ Hernandez toured freely and did great work with various bands in Cuba and U.S notable among many was work with Michel Camilo and Kip Hanrahan’s “Deep Rumba” project. He also played for the album “Supernatural”of Carlos Santana, which brought him his first Grammy Award.