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  • WDCH
  • Mar. 12, 2007
  • Uruguayan singer-songwriter and Academy Award-winner Jorge Drexler makes his debut appearance at Walt Disney Concert Hall on Monday, March 12 at 8 PM. French trio Las Ondas Marteles opens the show performing their unique style of bolero. This evening's host is Tom Schnabel, the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Program Advisor for World Music and KCRW on-air personality.

    Jorge Drexler came to the world's attention with his unprecedented 2005 Academy Award for Best Song From a Film. His song "Al Otro Lado del Rio," from the acclaimed movie The Motorcycle Diaries, was the first Spanish-language song ever to be nominated and the first foreign-language song in the Academy's 77-year history to actually win.

    Drexler's first American release was his seventh album Eco, which came out just after the Academy Awards ceremony. His much awaited eighth recording, 12 Segundos de Oscuridad (Twelve Seconds of Darkness) will be released in the U.S. in February 2007, and includes Drexler's English debut with the 1994 Radiohead track "High and Dry." 12 Segundos de Oscuridad is already praised in Spain and Latin America as the most personally revealing album of his career.

    Las Ondas Marteles consists of brothers Sébastien and Nicolas Martel, and bassist Sarah Murcia. During simultaneous trips, Sébastien and Nicolas visited Cuba and Mexico, and both returned to France equally captivated with the sounds of bolero. The brothers rehearsed together, and when Sarah joined the group, Las Ondas Marteles was complete. Their debut release, Y despues de todo, received substantial critical acclaim.

    JORGE DREXLER'S career path initially followed in the family tradition - his parents and siblings are all doctors. He received a medical education, specializing in ear, nose and throat. Although medicine was the family profession, music and literature were an integral part of his upbringing. In 1992, while still practicing medicine, Drexler released his first album La luz que sabe robar and two years later followed that with Radar. Though the albums were well received in Uruguay, success in Latin America's smallest country of 3 million inhabitants was not enough to sustain a career. Renowned Spanish singer-songwriter Joaquin Sabina discovered Drexler at a performance at the Teatro de Verano in Montevideo in 1994. He urged the Uruguayan musician to come to Spain, where he was sure there would be a keen interest in Drexler's well-crafted songs. Drexler arrived in Madrid in 1995. He was soon placing songs with a host of well-known artists including the Cuban legend Pablo Milanese, Ana Belén, Victor Manuel, Rosario Flores, Neneh Cherry, Lorenzo Jovanotti, Paulinho Moska and Miguel Rios and sharing the stage with many of them as well. In Spain, Drexler has released five albums. Vaivén (1996) was produced by Gonzalo Lasheras, songs written with Luis Eduardo Aute, Joaquin Sabina and Javier Alvarez. Llueve (1998) had an experimental flavor, as the singer-songwriter mixed milongas, zambas and candombes with a pop rhythm and sampled nature's sounds of rain, waves and wind. Frontera (1999), considered by many to be Drexler's artistic breakthrough, was recorded in Uruguay with two members of the funk/hip-hop group Peyote Asesino, Carlos Casacuberta and Juan Campodónico (of the Bajofondo Tango Club), as co-producers. Drexler played the traditional Uruguayan styles of candombe and murga against house and drum 'n' bass rhythms, creating a musical base from which to express his nostalgia and longing for his distant homeland. The resulting album opened new doors in Argentina and elsewhere in Latin America. Sea (2001) was nominated for a Latin Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Album in 2002. In 2003, Drexler co-authored the international hit song "Perfume"; it appeared on the album Bajofondo Tango Club which was awarded both a Latin Grammy and Argentina's Premio Gardel. Drexler's first American release was his seventh album, Eco. In addition to receiving an unprecedented 2005 Academy Award for Best Song From a Film (The Motorcyle Diaries), "Al Otro Lado del Rio" was nominated for Song of the Year at the 2005 Latin Grammys and Eco received a Best Latin Pop Album nomination at the 2005 Grammy Awards. 12 Segundos de Oscuridad, Drexler's eighth recording, will be released in the U.S. in February 2007.

    Brothers Sébastien and Nicolas Martel, and bassist Sarah Murcia, created LAS ONDAS MARTELES shortly after Sebastien and Nicolas, traveling separately to Cuba and Mexico, both fell in love with the sentimental, romantic sounds of bolero. Upon their return to Paris, Sébastien and Nicolas rehearsed some boleros to simply perform them during a family birthday party at a Montmartre restaurant. Asked by the restaurant manager to return, Las Ondas Marteles soon had a regular gig. Sarah Murcia, familiar with bolero and of Spanish origin, joined the brothers during this time, and Las Ondas Marteles was born. Their debut release, Y despues de todo is a tribute to Miguel Angel Ruiz, a censored Cuban poet/artist who Sébastien befriended during his trip to Cuba. Ruiz shared with Sébastien a few of his own musical compositions, and Las Ondas Marteles decided to produce arrangements of these songs. Shortly after Las Ondas Marteles began producing Ruiz' music, they learned of his death, and chose to dedicate the entire record to Ruiz. Made within three weeks, the album beautifully reveals the singular style of bolero while paying homage to Ruiz, capturing his voice, laugh, and musical contributions. It has received substantial critical acclaim; The London Times described Y despues de todo as "an intimate masterpiece."

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, under Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, presents the finest in orchestral and chamber music, recitals, new music, jazz, world music and holiday concerts at two of the most remarkable places anywhere to experience music - Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. In addition to a 30-week winter subscription season at Walt Disney Concert Hall, the LA Phil presents a 12-week summer festival at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and home of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the Association's involvement with Los Angeles extends to educational programs, community concerts and children's programming, ever seeking to provide inspiration and delight to the broadest possible audience.


    MONDAY, MARCH 12, 2007 AT 8:00 PM

    WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL, 111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles



    TOM SCHNABEL, host

    Tickets ($25-$42) are on sale now online at, at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office, or via credit card phone order at 323.850.2000. A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full time students may be available at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office two hours prior to the performance. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person; cash only. Groups of 12 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For all information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Adam Crane, 213.972.3408,; Lisa Bellamore, 213.972.3689,; Photos: 213.972.3034