The PPH Museum Presents: Viva Quetzal!
Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum (130 River Drive, Hadley, MA 01035, Hadley MA)
The Wednesday Folk Traditions concert series at The Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum continues its 42nd season on July 12th at 6:30 pm with Viva Quetzal, a World/Afro-Andean/Latin/Jazz Fusion band who draw on a diverse soundscape and folkloric themes to create a link between the rainforests of Central and South America, the carnivals of Brazil, the high plateaus of the Andes, and the urban barrios of Latin America and the United States. Viva Quetzal’s members hail from Latin America and New England and feel that the merging and sharing of musical traditions may help reconcile political, cultural, and linguistic divides throughout the Americas.
The concert will be held outside on the grounds of the museum at 130 River Drive, Route 47, Hadley MA 01035. Admission is $12, $2 for children 16 and under, or free for participants in the Card to Culture program. Cash only please. Picnickers are welcome starting at 5:00 pm. In the event of rain, performances will be held at Wesley United Methodist Church in Hadley. The museum and its grounds are a carry in/carry out, smoke-free site. For further information please call (413) 584-4699 or view www.pphmuseum.org.
Viva Quetzal provides a high-energy musical experience featuring artists from across the Americas who perform an eclectic mixture of traditional, folkloric, and pop themes using a fascinating array of instruments. The band has toured extensively in the USA, playing at clubs, colleges, festivals, and fine arts centers. Viva Quetzal has released three albums, including Ancestros (1995), Mujeres de la Puna (1998) and Hijos del Sol (Signature Sounds, 2000). They are also featured on Putamayo’s Music of the Andes (2014).
Viva Quetzal’s members include Robert Clavijo, who plays quenas, zampoñas, charango, Venezuelan cuatro, and vocals. Born in Arica, Chile, Clavijo has toured much of Central and South America with the renowned folkloric group Guamary before joining Viva Quetzal in 1993, playing in folk clubs, on television, and at university concerts in Panama, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, and Curaçao. Joe Belmont is a classical and electric guitarist who plays the Colombian tiple. He has performed with the group since 1992. Originally self-taught, Belmont later earned a degree in music theory and composition from the City College of New York. He has released two of his own records and fronts his own band, Joe Belmont Experience. Jon Weeks plays flute, saxophone, wind synth, and percussion. Weeks has performed with a variety of jazz, rock, and Latin bands throughout the East Coast such as Sol y Canto, Orquesta Unidad, The Temptations and many others. Abe “Oscar” Sanchez performs on vocals and keyboard. Sanchez has performed with the Orchestra Latina while studying at the Conservatorio de Música de Maracay. He brings a wealth of experience from his native Venezuela, where he was director of a music school and toured both nationally and internationally. Rudi Weeks, a member of Viva Quetzal for over twenty years, plays upright and electric bass. Weeks has performed with 60s greats such as The Contours, The Crests, and Ronnie Spector, as well as folk and bluegrass legends Tom Paxton and Tony Triska. Weeks has served as a faculty member at UMass, Amherst College, and Holyoke Community College while performing with groups such as Viva Quetzal. Eliezer Martinez, Viva Quetzal’s newest member, is featured on the drums. Of Panamanian descent, Martinez was raised in New England and developed an interest in gospel music through local churches. He has played for local gospel recording artists such as the Kevin Sharp Group, Rossana Regalado, Marino Rojas, and José Lizardo.
Wednesday Folk Traditions continues on July 19th with Tony Vacca’s World Rhythms Ensemble, which presents a free-flowing fusion of jazz, world music, and spoken word. Combining elements of traditional African and Afro-Cuban rhythms with American jazz instrumentation, they create a sound that is both familiar and excitingly new.