The Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum continues its 37th season of Wednesday Folk Traditions on July 11, 2018, with Jose Gonzalez & Criollo Clasico, performing contemporary rhythms of Puerto Rico, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic. Comprised of Jose Gonzalez, his sons Ahmed, a flute sensation, and multi-percussionist Rene, this family is one of the most prestigious music ensembles of Puerto Rico. This and all other performances are held Wednesday evenings at 6:30 pm in the Sunken Garden at the Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum, 130 River Drive, Route 47, Hadley, MA 01035. General admission is $12, or $2 for children 16 and under. Picnickers are welcome on the museum grounds beginning at 5:00 pm. The museum and its grounds a smoke-free site. For further information please call (413)-584-4699 or visit www.pphmuseum.org
Master of the cuatro, the national instrument of Puerto Rico, Jose Gonzalez is renowned as one of Puerto Rico’s premier artists and composers. In the past, he has been music director for Puerto Rico's top artists, such as Giovanni Hidalgo, Danny Rivera, El Topo, Roy Brown. He has performed all over the United States and Puerto Rico, including appearances with the Hartford, CT and Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestras as well as the Bronx Arts Ensemble, New Jersey Chamber Music Society, Heineken Jazz Jam Series and the World Guitar Festival among many others. His composition “Bomba Te Traigo Yo” was performed by the US Navy Band in Washington DC in 2009. Gonzalez has become a favorite performer in the Valley at various colleges and festivals, his music hailed as a “gift to the soul”
Jose Gonzalez will be joined by his two sons, Rene and Ahmed, acclaimed musicians in their own right. Together, they form Criollo Clasico, a group celebrated both in Puerto Rico and the Pioneer Valley. Ahmed Gonzalez, flute, percussion, and guitar, studied classical flute at Smith College under the direction of Sue Kurian, who studied with the great Jean-Pierre Rampal. His dedication to the jazz flute led him to record and perform with several prominent Latin artists, as well as to produce his 2009 album “Flute Soul” (2009 Criollo Clasico Music). “Flute Soul” features myriad styles, from Latin to Classical to rock, all of which Rene performs with mastery and virtuosity. Rene Gonzalez, percussionist and bassist, studied music at UMass and has performed alongside world masters of percussion such as Giovanni Hidalgo, Paoili Mejias, Trilok Gurtu and Steve Berrios. His skills on congas, bongos, timbales, drumset, cajon, bata drums and his continuous studies make him a living encyclopedia of Latin percussion. Most recently, he has begun apprenticeships on electric and upright bass, performing with numerous groups on these instruments as well. Together, the family forms one of today’s finest performance groups of Puerto Rico.