Yosvany Terry is an internationally acclaimed Cuban musician, American composer, saxophonist, percussionist, bandleader, educator and cultural bearer of the Afro-Cuban tradition. He has played with Branford Marsalis, Rufus Reid, Dave Douglas, Steve Coleman, Roy Hargrove, Henry Threadgill, Avishai Cohen, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Taj Mahal, and Eddie Palmieri Afro-Caribbean Sextet.
Born into a musical family in Camaguey, Cuba, Yosvany Terry went on to classical music training in Havana at the prestigious National School of Arts (ENA) and Amadeo Roldan Conservatory. After graduating, Terry worked with major figures in every realm of Cuban music including pianists Chucho Valdes, Frank Emilio, and the celebrated nueva trova singer/guitarist Silvio Rodriguez.
His latest release, the GRAMMY Award-nominated New Throned King (5Passion, 2014), features music based on Arará cantos and rhythms and has been called the “musical culmination of his spiritual exploration” (All About Jazz). His previous album, Today’s Opinion (Criss Cross, 2012), was selected as one of the Top 10 Albums of the Year by the New York Times’ Nate Chinen. In 2015, Terry was named a recipient of the prestigious Doris Duke Artist Award.
He has received recent commissions by the Yerba Buena Garden Festival (Noches de Parranda for 12-piece ensemble with the support of The MAP Fund), the French-American Jazz Exchange (Ancestral Memories with pianist Baptiste Trotignon and support from the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation and Doris Duke Charitable Foundation), and the Harlem Stage (the score for the opera Makandal, premiering in 2015). Terry received a grant from Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors and New York State Music Fund to create Afro-Cuban Roots: Yedégbé, a suite of Arará music. His latest project, The Bohemian Trio, is a genre-defying contemporary music ensemble based in New York.
Terry photo by Bill Dougart.