How would you like to sit a few feet from one of the greatest masters of the jazz flute in the world, be able to watch her every move, and be able to hang with the band between sets?
…Andrea ranks with the absolute top handful of jazz flautists in the entire world (or universe) with blazing technique, a deep love for the Latin tinge, a soulful flute sound that is a cross between Charlie Parker, Roland Kirk and the great monsters of the classical instrument.
Andrea has it all, and it is a great mystery of life how she can walk the earth without a major record contract, a spot on the nightly news and her face on Time magazine. There was one moment of playing on her classic Haynes instrument where she got some tonalities out of the lower register, which were sounds only Stan Getz truly knew.
This was beyond flute music, because Andrea is high and above a master player who has the power and technique of a really hot saxophonist, the lyrical reach of, say, Bobby Hutcherson, and the rhythmic power of a congalero like Poncho Sanchez. The jazz spy says this is it: moments of complete transcendence, melodic beauty, driving complex rhythms, complete mastery, and cosmic artistic bliss.
Life is too short without this kind of flying through space. And please see her live. Jazz is meant for intimate communication between the artist and you. After a performance like this, you are renewed. This is the bliss of the jazz life. This is what everyone meant when they said “Bird lives.” This is music from the planets, right here on earth. The Jazz Spy says check it out.
-Kenneth L. Vermes, The Jazz Spy, April 6, 2010, JazzWest.com
Flutist, composer, arranger, producer, educator, business owner, Andrea Brachfeld, is a graduate of The High School of Music and Art and the Manhattan School of Music. Study with Hubert Laws, Jimmy Heath, George Coleman, and Mike Longo helped her develop her own improvisational style.
Since she began her professional career as a musician at age 16, she has recorded and played many different genres of music including funk, Country Western, Charanga, Salsa, Latin Jazz, devotional music and more recently, Jazz. Some of the many artists she has associated with include Wayne Wallace, Bobby Carcassés, Oscar Hernandez, Alfredo de la Fe, Ralph Irrizarry, Tito Puente, Ray Barretto, Joe Newman, Hubert Laws, Nestor Torres, Dave Valentín, Paquito D’Rivera, Kenwood Dennard, Hilton Ruiz, Steve Turre, Wycliffe Gordon and Wallace Roney among many others.
Her breakthrough performance as the flutist for the popular Latin band Charanga ’76, catapulted her into Salsa history and fame as the first female flutist to play this music in the United States.
As a high school student, she received the “Louis Armstrong Award for Outstanding Student” from Jazz Interactions, an organization created by Joe and Rigmor Newman. Downbeat magazine referred to Andrea as “one of the finest jazz flutists around.” She has twice been the recipient of the Latin New York Music Award as a flutist. She received the Chico O’Farrill Lifetime Achievement Award from Latin Jazz USA in Oct. 2006 and the “Pionero Award” in 2010 for her contribution to Latin music. Her most recent award, “Tribute to the Charanga Flutes,” given by Charanga Legends USA, was presented to her in August of 2012.
While in Venezuela, having been contracted by music impressario, Renato Capriles, she had the honor of opening for Chick Corea and Paco de Lucia with her first Latin Jazz band in 1982. Her first Latin Jazz CD, “Remembered Dreams” combines original music in the jazz style with Latin rhythms. Her second CD, “Back With Sweet Passion”, is a dynamic Charanga Jazz recording featuring Grammy winner Oscar Hernandez on piano and Alfredo De La Fey on violin. Her third CD “Beyond Standards”, a collaborative effort with Chembo Corniel, features jazz greats Hilton Ruiz on piano, Steve Turre on trombone, and Pedrito Martinez on vocals. She has appeared with the Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra as a soloist performing her own compositions as well as those of Mike Longo, longtime musical director for Dizzy Gillespie. Her most recent Latin Jazz CD, “Into the World: A Musical Offering” features guest artists Mike Longo, Paul West and Brian Lynch. Her latest CD, which is her first straight-ahead Jazz CD named “Lady of the Island”, will be released by ZOHO music this fall, featuring Wallace Roney, Wycliffe Gordon, and Bill O’Connell, longtime musical director for Dave Valentín. He also produced the record as well as wrote the arrangements.
More recently Andrea has traveled to Cuba a number of times to perform at the Havana Jazz Festival. She was also initiated into the Hall of Fame at the Hotel Nacional in Havana.
“Louis Armstrong Award” for Outstanding Student from Jazz Interactions
“Latin New York Music Award” – Twice the recipient for flutist
“Chico O’Farrill Lifetime Achievement Award” – Latin Jazz USA
“Tribute to Women in Salsa” – Salsation Productions, Washington DC
Nominated as “Best Latin Jazz flutist” – Chip Boaz – Latin Jazz Corner
“Pionero” Award for my contribution in Latin Music – Mario Torres Productions
“Tribute to the Charanga Flutes”, given by Charanga Legends USA presented in August of 2012
“Official Hall of Fame Artist”, Salsamagazine.com Salsa Awards 2012