Celebrate “the beautiful faces of my black people” in an evening dedicated to the hit sounds of Puerto Ricansongwriter Tite Curet Alonso (“Periódico de Ayer,” “Las Caras Lindas”), who died in 2003. The deep trombone sound of Grupo Esencia from Ponce, Puerto Rico, mixes salsa, guaguancó, and la samba with plena and other Caribbean rhythms. Fifteen years after the group’s founding, this is Esencia’s first New York City performance.
Led by Tito Matos (percussion) and Ricardo Pons (flute, saxophones), Viento de Agua—or “wind of water”—is one of Puerto Rico’s preeminent bomba and plena groups, specializing in the down-home típico sounds of puertorriqueños. Renowned salsa singer Lalo Rodríguez (“Ven Devórame Otra Vez”) and Cita Rodriguez join them to perform more hits by Alonso.