By Rachael E. Worthington
Few musicians have collected the variety of awards that Arturo Sandoval has — not only is he a 10-time Grammy Award winner, but he’s a 19-time nominee, an Emmy-winner, a six-time Billboard Award winner, and a recipient of the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom. It comes as no surprise that this master jazz trumpeter was mentored by the legendary Dizzy Gillespie himself.
When asked what fans should know about his upcoming Lincoln Center performance on March 22, Sandoval says, “I’m still as in love with music as the first day, and I always look for my next gig — to play the best for them.”
Sandoval hails from Cuba, and began trumpeting at 12 years old, idolizing Gillespie as he explored jazz with an influence of his Latin roots. Later in life, he had the opportunity to tour with Gillespie, who was so instrumental in Sandoval’s career that it inspired the book The Man Who Changed My Life, based on Sandoval’s own memoirs.
Over the course of Sandoval’s 40+ years in music, he’s had the opportunity to play alongside artists such as Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Alicia Keys, Justin Timberlake and Josh Groban, but his favorite musician to work with still continues to be Gillespie. “No doubt about it, the one and only,” says Sandoval, “Of course I’ve had the privilege to play with a lot of great artists that I admire and respect so much, but he was so good to me over the years.”
Although Sandoval’s career has stretched over the past four decades, his love for jazz and his desire to share music with others has never faltered. “It’s my love, it’s my passion, I’ve been dedicated to music my entire life nonstop,” says Sandoval with palpable excitement in his voice.
It’s that dedication and passion that has helped elevate Sandoval to a status reserved for only the most elite and well respected of musicians. His life and passion has served to inspire others and was portrayed in the HBO movie, For Love or Country, starring Andy Garcia, for which he composed the entire score and garnered his Emmy for Outstanding Music Composition.
Currently, Sandoval is in the process of finishing up an album, his very first compilation of duets. It has been two years in the making, and as Sandoval says, “Important artists are really busy to coordinate everyone’s availability, but it’s worth every second.”
What should the Lincoln Center audience expect from Arturo’s only stop in Colorado? “We’re gonna try our best to give them 100% with a lot of passion and enthusiasm, with our best desire to make them have a good time.”
Tickets for Arturo Sandoval’s March 22 performance start at $15 and are available at LCtix.com.
Join us for a masterclass with Sandoval in the University Center for the Arts Organ Recital Hall on March 21st at 6 p.m. Free and open to the public.