Fabian Almazan Trio

 

Written By Hayley Hunt

On June 14, 2019, at Dazzle in Denver, the Fabian Trio stepped onto the small stage and performed in front of a room full of individuals waiting to hear the first few notes to be played. 

There are three members of the Fabian Almazan Trio: Fabian Almazan, Linda Oh and Henry Cole. Each individual group member has released their own albums and are dedicated musicians, as seen in their performance in Denver. The songs they played tiptoed around the classical, Cuban, and electric genres. One can only describe the songs as ‘synchronized chaos.’  

Almazan has taken piano a step further by adding a mix of his Cuban roots into the music. He was born in Havana, Cuba, and moved to Miami, Fla., in order to get free piano lessons for three years from piano instructor, Conchita Betancourt. Afterwards, Almazan was able to get into the New World School of the Arts High School in Miami, continuing onto Brubeck Institute and finally to the Manhattan School of Music, where he finally got his bachelor’s degree in music.

Linda Oh also performed in the Fabian Trio on both bass and cello. Oh was born in Malaysia, but raised in Perth, Western Australia. She began playing piano at age fifteen, but began to get into the electric bass once in high school. Once her love of bass began, she applied and continued to study at W.A. Academy of Performing Arts before moving onto the Manhattan School of Music in 2008, as well as achieve her masters in music. After graduating with her masters, Oh put out her debut album Entry in 2009 and later on releasing her albums Initial Here, Sun Pictures, and Walk Against Wind.

Along with Linda Oh, Henry Cole plays drums for the Fabian Trio. Cole is a native of Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, and first began his music journey at age four, where he started playing the piano. At age nine, he had fallen in love with playing drums and began to pursue his dream of music at Berklee College of Music. Later on he moved to the Manhattan School of Music, where he met both Fabian Almazan and Linda Oh.  Cole has put out a debut album named Roots Before Branches, as well as the single El Diablo. Along with his albums, in 2018, he received a Grammy for Best Urban Rap Album along with Calle 13.

 During the show the audience applauded loudly after each song, for both old and new albums. Many people seemed to know most of the songs, while others simply enjoyed the background music, listening to it for the first time. Almazan took the time to explain his reasoning behind some songs from his new album, stating that he enjoys taking inspiration from nature, his family, and Cuban traditions. 

One man who seemed invested in the Fabian Trio’s musical journey was Roy Leinfuss. When interviewing him after the show, he displayed a mountain of about 15 CDs, claiming that they were all of the albums from each performer in the trio. He stated that he collects all of their CDs and enjoys following their performances and even stayed for their second act of the night. Roy had even went to see the group on Nov. 2018 when they were at Dazzle for the first time.  By being a regular at Dazzle, Roy had the opportunity to see the Fabian Trio more than once in the past year.

Audience member Scott Scwneider said he has heard about the performance through the Dazzle web page and immediately bought a ticket for the performance.  He has, however, seen Fabian in concert with Terence Blanchard. 

“It is nice to see what people are doing and how they are using their talents for creativity to enrich the world or their audience,” said Scwnieder.  

While these two had both seen and heard of at least one of the performers, audience member Ross Rabin had not. Before receiving the monthly Dazzle email listing who would be there to preform, Ross knew nothing of the band, simply going due to free time, an interest in jazz music and slight knowledge of the bass and cello player, Linda Oh. Ross had heard of Oh through his friends, who stated that “She was a good musician,” and they had been following her music for some time.

The concert itself was filled with life and a window into Cuban culture that was then shown to the audience. Fabian Almazan, Linda Oh and Henry Cole gained more followers during the concert and continued to impress the ones who already support them. All of the band members continue to work on and put out their own individual music.

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