The position brings experience and expertise in the fusion of jazz with world music
Ximo Tébar, guitarist, producer, composer and music educator, and winner of numerous national and international awards, has been appointed professor of global jazz and music studies at the Herb Alpert School of Music at UCLA. His teaching will focus on advanced jazz guitar and redefining the perimeters of jazz and world music.
“I am honored to be a part of the faculty at UCLA Global Jazz Studies, and I am confident that my contribution as a teacher will be beneficial to students by providing them with an open and diverse view of the peculiarities and philosophy of jazz, blues, and world music.”
Tébar is recognized for his contributions to world music genres, not only as a musician and composer, but also as the creator of “Son Mediterraneo”, a jazz sound with a flamenco-Mediterranean fragrance. “Jazz with a sea flavor”. His latest CD-DVD “A-Free-Kan Jazz Dance Big Band” demonstrates a great capacity for leadership and resources through arrangements and performances that surprisingly fuse jazz with African culture and World Music.
He attaches great importance to rhythm and has created a successful teaching methodology that allows students to learn, in a theoretical, practical and motivating way, the study and investigation of the internal rhythmic codes of jazz and any musical style.
“I instill in the students the importance of respect for tradition and rhythmic keys as a fundamental basis for the good interpretation of any musical style. I have developed an easy-to-learn system cataloged in “Claves” or internal rhythmic pulses intrinsic in different musical styles that demonstrate and ensure a correct rhythmic performance adapted to any musical context. For me, rhythm is essential in a good performance, both as a soloist and as an accompaniment. On many occasions I have seen that teaching systems do not usually delve into this aspect and they focus much more broadly on harmony, scales, repertoire, speed, technique, etc, forgetting that all this is of little use if you do not know how to interpret while respecting the rhythmic “Claves” or the internal pulse, and mastering the spaces, silences and microsilences”.
Ximo is a great connoisseur of jazz tradition, and his way of playing the guitar has been endorsed publicly by prominent jazz masters such as Benny Golson and George Benson. For more than thirty years he has never stopped playing and recording with jazz giants like; Johnny Griffin, Benny Golson, Lou Donaldson, Joey DeFrancesco, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Joe Lovano, Louie Bellson, Arturo O’Farrill, Tom Harrel, Dave Schnitter, Idris Muhammad, and others. The great jazz organist Lou Bennett presented him in France as a “new guitar talent.” George Benson defined his style as a new voice of the guitar, and Benny Golson said about him, “He’s astounding”. The most prestigious jazz magazines worldwide highlight it as: «Le jazzman espagnol… un improvisateur de haute volée» [Jazz Magazine]; “Sound of surprise” [All About Jazz New York]; “Spanish jazz guitarist Ximo Tebar, it’s all magical, sophisticated and surprising” [JazzTimes Magazine].
“I don’t want to forget to mention that during my formative stage I studied with extraordinary teachers like Kenny Burrell, Joe Pass, Pat Martino. This experience as a student, along with the professional experience playing and recording with great jazz masters, has made me see and assimilate the importance of knowledge and respect for the tradition, philosophy, and language of blues and jazz”.
His extensive and eclectic discography (20 albums as a leader), the numerous awards he has received (four-time national award by Ministry of Culture 1989-90, two “Dexter Gordon’s Award” by RTVE “Jazz Entre Amigos” 1991, IAJE New York Education Academy JAZZ AWARD 2007, etc.), the excellent reviews he has received, and especially the modernity and eclecticism of his music have all led him to occupy a special place in the world of contemporary jazz.