Eddie Gomez

Spotlight Series: Eddie Gomez

Not many can say they’ve shared the stage with iconic jazz legends such as Benny Goodman, Miles Davis and Gerry Mulligan before the age of 21 – but Eddie Gomez is no ordinary musician.

This Sunday, October 1st, audiences in Arlington, Texas, will experience the extraordinary artistry of jazz bassist and two-time GRAMMY Award winner Gomez when he takes the stage with his trio at Levitt Pavilion Arlington.

Born in Santurce, Puerto Rico in 1944 and raised in New York, Gomez discovered his love and talent for double bass at the early age of 11, and two years later attended the prestigious New York City High School of Music and Art. He continued his classical music education at Julliard School of Music, but by then Gomez had already begun to make a name for himself in the jazz world, regularly playing gigs and collaborating with fellow Julliard keyboardist and longtime artistic ally Chick Corea. Towards the end of his third year in college, in 1966, Gomez accepted a gig from famed saxophonist Gerry Mulligan that would present him with the opportunity of a lifetime – the quintet double-billed New York’s Village Vanguard with famed group the Bill Evans Trio, which happened to be looking for a bass player. With his fluid reflexes and unique sound, Gomez fit the part, and the rest is history.

At the mere age of 21, Gomez had earned a spot working alongside one of his musical heroes – he would go on to perform with the Bill Evans Trio for 11 years, during which the group toured the U.S., Europe, South America and Asia, recorded dozens of albums, and won two GRAMMY awards. During his time with the trio, Gomez also fulfilled his dream of playing with the Miles Davis quintet, alongside jazz legends Tony Williams, Wayne Shorter, and Herbie Hancock.

In 1977, Gomez left the Bill Evans Trio to pursue his career as a bandleader and explore his vast range of musical interests. His extensive repertoire includes collaborating and performing with countless musicians (Benny Goodman, Dizzy Gillespie, Bobby Darin, Art Garfunkel, and Mark Kramer, to name a few) and serving as an artist-in-residence and educator at universities all over the U.S. and Europe, including Stanford, Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and Berklee College of Music, from which he received an honorary doctorate of music at its international campus in Valencia, Spain.

Today, Gomez holds the Artistic Director position at the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico. He has been touring and recording with pianist Stefan Karlsson and drummer Jimmy Cobb since 1992 – the three form the dynamic Eddie Gomez trio, set to perform free at Levitt Pavilion Arlington this Sunday.

Since his first exposure to jazz in grade school, Gomez has relentlessly fueled his fire for artistic exploration and innovation, and has encouraged countless other aspiring musicians to do the same. Join us for Gomez’s rich rhythm decades in the making, and come see what TIME Magazine means when it claims, “Eddie Gomez has the world on his strings.”

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