In September of 2014, I began working with Casita Maria and Arturo O'Farrill as an oral historian on the Guerrilla Jazz Project.  Arturo is heading a brand new combo of Bronx based musicians called Blitz.  Blitz includes Arturo O'Farrill, Will Calhoun, Bam Bam Rodriguez, Alejandro Avilés and Kali Rodriguez-Peña.  Each musician was assigned to compose a piece based on an oral history interview with a longtime Bronx native.  

These compositions were performed in pop-up performances in surprising places across the Bronx in 2015.

Bob Sancho grew up in the South Bronx.  He has been an unparalleled supporter of Latin musicians both in New York City and beyond.  He has been working at the Bronx Lebanon Hospital since 1981.

Bob Sancho grew up in the South Bronx.  He has been an unparalleled supporter of Latin musicians both in New York City and beyond.  He has been working at the Bronx Lebanon Hospital since 1981.

Anne Calhoun grew up on a farm in North Carolina, but she moved to NYC to get her Masters Degree from NYU.  She raised her three children in the Bronx, where she still lives today.

Anne Calhoun grew up on a farm in North Carolina, but she moved to NYC to get her Masters Degree from NYU.  She raised her three children in the Bronx, where she still lives today.

Hetty Fox, PhD, has lived on the same block in the Bronx for over 70 years.  She has run a community play street on her block for over 37 years.  She is an activist, a conga player, and a visual artist.

Hetty Fox, PhD, has lived on the same block in the Bronx for over 70 years.  She has run a community play street on her block for over 37 years.  She is an activist, a conga player, and a visual artist.

Benny Bonilla is a percussionist and longtime Bronx resident.  He played timbales on the first ever Boogaloo hit, "I Like It Like That." 

Benny Bonilla is a percussionist and longtime Bronx resident.  He played timbales on the first ever Boogaloo hit, "I Like It Like That." 

Andy Gonzalez is a renowned Latin Jazz bassist.  He was a founding member of Grupo Folklórico y Experimental Nuevayorkino the Fort Apache Band.

Andy Gonzalez is a renowned Latin Jazz bassist.  He was a founding member of Grupo Folklórico y Experimental Nuevayorkino the Fort Apache Band.

 

To hear interview clips and learn more about these passionate Bronx natives, please click on the people themselves.  If they are un-clickable, they are currently in process.  

Prepare to be transported.

 

Learn more about Casita Maria.

Learn more about Blitz.