Oscar Peñas

Oscar Penas, guitarist and composer, is a great example of a new generation of musicians who are a vital part of New York City’s vibrant music scene. He was raised in Spain and trained in classical guitar, before moving to Jazz. Penas, a New York-based musician, has been performing and recording since the early 2000s. He also shared his passion for music by combining teaching and performing. Oscar Penas’ compositions transcend and blend different cultures, genres and styles with grace, grace, and power. WNYC has called his style “transnational cool”. His music is not considered “jazz”, but it transcends the boundaries of traditional music labels. He blends original compositions with elements of Brazilian folk music and new Spanish folk music to create a unique sound. Oscar graduated from Berklee College of Music in cum lade. He was also awarded a Professional Music Achievement for his exceptional musicianship. In 2000, Oscar returned home to Barcelona to sharpen his skills by performing at Jazz Festivals and other venues. His recordings include his albums on Fresh Sound, Astronautus (2003 and The Return of the Astronautus (2006). Both CDs contained original compositions and were performed by an electric quintet. After his second recording, Penas returned to the USA in 2005 to pursue a master’s degree at the New England Conservatory. He received a Master’s in Jazz Performance in 2007 from the NEC and then moved to New York. Penas has been actively working with his trio or quartet band, which performs across genres and features instruments that are not commonly found in jazz, such as the accordion, violin, and piano. Penas’ third disc, From Now On, was released in November 2011. It is his debut album in the USA. This third critically acclaimed record features Gil Goldstein, a music legend, on accordion, piano, and with his current group. The trio format has been Penas’s most consistent output over the years. The group’s sound palette is a mix of acoustic, electric and a classy addition of violin. Oscar received the ASCAP Plus Award this year for his works in unsurveyed media. He is also a writer whose catalogues have high prestige value. After a successful fundraising campaign through USA Projects, Penas is currently preparing his fourth and self-produced album Music of Departures and Returns. It features his working quartet and Grammy Winners Esperanza Spalding and Paquito ‘Rivera. Penas’ jazz group has performed at many New York clubs, including Bargemusic, Tea Lounge and Bargemusic. Penas also toured Europe (France, Spain and Panama) and South America (Colombia, Panama, and Cuba). Penas also hosted master classes and clinics for the poor children, giving them the opportunity to learn and practice music. Oscar, in addition to his work as an educator and trumpeter, has also played/toured with Ralph Alessi, Jason Palmer, Petr Cancura and Uri Gurvich, as well as pianists Gil Goldstein, Leo Genovese, and drummers Henry Cole and Francisco Mela. from http://oscarpenas.com

Leave a Comment