ABOUT THE FESTIVAL: Inaugurated in 1997 by the late great "King of Latin Music" Tito Puente, the Brownsville Latin Jazz Festival has hosted countless Latin Jazz artists of the highest caliber. It is an inclusive event that for seventeen years has advanced the multi-cultural diversity of our community, improved our quality of life and entertained thousands residents and visitors of all ages and backgrounds. Preserving its original identity, many industry professionals recognize it as THE Latin Jazz Festival of Texas and one of the best in the country.
The Festival's musical outreach programs and the integration of quality Latin dance and art components have expanded its impact and broadened its popular appeal. Recognizing its beneficial impact, the Festival is strongly supported by the City of Brownsville at the local level and by the Texas Commission for the Arts (TCA) at the state level. At our country's highest level, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) qualifies the BSPA's Brownsville Latin Jazz Festival as a presenter of multi-disciplinary art and awarded it the most prestigious and generous grants in the entire region for seven consecutive years.
Visit Brownsville Texas and experience the Festival, you won't be dissappointed! Click here to visit the Brownsville Convention and Visitor's Bureau.
THE 2013 FESTIVAL: This year we dedicated the Festival to the legacy of the late great MONGO SANTAMARIA (1922-2003) who, like Tito Puente before him, was instrumental in forming the unmistakable sound of Latin Jazz as we know it today. Many consider Mongo Santamaria to have been the greatest conga drummer of the twentieth century. Many of today's top Latin jazz artists, and certainly most percussionists of the genre, owe Mongo a debt of gratitude. The picture on the left shows Poncho Sanchez, a Festival veteran and one of the world's best conga players, embracing his mentor, Mongo Santamaria. Today, Mongo's signature style of drumming can be heard throughout the world of Latin jazz. Give yourself a musical treat, click play on the player, turn up the volume and listen to "Ti Mon Bo" featuring (Ti) Tito Puente on timbales, (Mon) Mongo Santamaria on congas and (Bo) Willie Bobo on bongos. Simply amazing!
OUR REVIEW: We knew they'd be good but José Rizo's MONGORAMA truly exceeded our expectations! Our visiting artists produced a stunnning and truly memorable experience.
Sure enough, they played some of Mongo Santamaria's original music but they also showed us how much more they've added to it; how they integrated the old with the new and produced what may be the very best Latin Jazz music in the world today... beautiful, sophisticated and irresistable, grown so far beyond its roots, deeply Latin but so American as well. It was an outstanding display of our common heritage, the music we will all remember and the music they will remember us by.
The BSPA is proud to have brought this musical masterpiece to Brownsville. We thank the artists and our sponsors that made it all possible, of course, but are most grateful to the many hundreds of people of all ages and backgrounds who were there to enjoy it.
We will leave the lineup graphics in place for a while so anyone visiting can get a glimpse of what took place in Brownsville, Texas on the weekend of October 11-13, 2013.
Please feel free to contact us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us directly during regular business hours at 956-831-9590 if you have comments or questions.