Explosive Cuban/Jewish Jazz named the Best World Music Group/Canadian Folk Music Awards, #1 Jazz CD of 2007. Trumpeter and composer David Buchbinder teams up with a crew of top jazz and World musicians to present this exciting, unprecedented project of musical discovery: the Jewish-Cuban connection.


There is beautiful music here, along with ferocity and no small amount of fun. Failure to respond is virtually impossible.” -Buffalo News

Odessa/Havana is a high-powered collision of two great musical styles predated but not predicted by the Jewish-fueled, American Mambo craze of the 1950s. Working from the roots of each tradition and finding many areas of sonic commonality, Buchbinder and co-composer Hilario Durán have crafted a sound that is exciting, fresh and compelling as it challenges listeners' comfortable genre preconceptions.

While the cities and cultures of Odessa and Havana might seem many miles apart, their musical
associations are many-faceted, multi-layered and rich indeed; rooted in their common ancestry on the Iberian peninsula and sharing Arabic, Roma (Gypsy), Sephardic and North African for bearers. The two musics already share haunting minor modalities, improvisatory flourishes, a strong rhythmic drive and deeply spiritual underpinnings. Buchbinder and Durán's compositions explore these commonalities as they break new ground, creating a truly unprecedented sound. And both musical traditions have long since proven their suitability for creative adaptation, serving as a kind of “raw material” for musical development (Latin jazz, modern klezmer/“Radical Jewish Culture”). Odessa/Havana is also emblematic of what might be termed post-multicultural creation, something that is increasingly happening in Canada's major urban centres as mature musicians from diverse musical and cultural backgrounds meet, collaborate and create new sounds that transcend countries and cultures of origin. It is no coincidence that Odessa/Havana was born in downtown Toronto, where there is so much natural experimentation occurring.

Odessa/Havana is “a genuine hybrid, strongly flavoured by Russian-Jewish modality and Afro-Cuban rhythms, but with those strands so strongly intertwined as to seem inextricable.” - Globe & Mail

The musicians of Odessa/Havana: Along with Buchbinder, Odessa/Havana includes the some of the most sizzling musicians in the country: Luis Guerra (piano), Paco Luviano (bass), John Johnson (reeds), Max Senitt (drums), Aleksandar Gajic (violin), and Rick Shadrach Lazar (percussion). Featured as a guest on the recording and at times in performance is Grammy-nominated, Cuban drumming great, Dafnis Prieto. (Hilario Durán is on the recording but not part of the touring unit.) This is an ensemble of incredible, award-winning instrumentalists, bandleaders, producers and educators whose performing, producing and compositional credits read like a Who’s Who of the international World jazz and pop scene.

For the latest info about Odessa/Havana please visit: www.odessahavana.com or www.myspace.com/odessahavana. Also visit www.davidbuchbinder.ca


Odessa/Havana released its debut CD (on the Tzadik label) in November of 2007 to great critical and audience acclaim, including being named the #1 Jazz CD of 2007 by Toronto Life and Allmusic.com.

Set List

We typically play two 50-minute sets of original compositions by Jewish trumpeter David Buchbinder and Cuban pianist Hilario Durán.

1. Lailadance
2. Impresiones
3. Cadiz
4. Next One Rising
5. Rumba Judia
6. Prayer
7. Colaboracion
8. Freylekhs Tumbao
9. Coffee Works
10. Aventura Judia
11. Invectus
12. Dance of the Infidels
13. Ruma