Guillermo Klein


The past decade has found composer/pianist Guillermo Klein focusing on large projects. On his latest recording, Telmo’s Tune, Klein looks to recapture a feeling of spontaneity and community that he has missed. So rather than composing heavily conceptual pieces for his flagship Los Guachos ensemble, he chose to assemble a quintet (or, more appropriately, Quinteto) of New York based musicians to capture a more explorative band feeling.

Klein has made a name for himself as an expert composer, who finds ingenious ways to make the complicated feel natural and evolve. Many of his pieces over the past decade have evolved out of strict studies of musical phenomena that Klein was able to exercise and mold into highly rhythmic and inviting pieces for Los Guachos and other notable ensembles. These endeavors include delivering highly wrought compositions that require time for construction and preparation from the ensembles.

A break from these procedures would be a liberating experience for Klein, so when playing at New York’s legendary Village Vanguard jazz club during the summer of 2022, Klein recruited old friends and a newcomer to the fold to play a collection of tunes that provides plenty of avenues for expressive dimensions provided by individual decisions on the bandstand. The Quinteto that Klein put together included longtime friends and collaborators, like bassist Matt Pavolka, Leo Genovese on Fender Rhodes and other keyboards, and Los Guachos saxophonist Chris Cheek. When Klein was recently introduced to drummer Allan Mednard, they had an instant connection, cementing Mednard’s role as a creative partner in the Quinteto.

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