Gabriel Palatchi (contributed photo). Gabriel Palatchi (contributed photo).

How about some funk or klezmer with your jazz?

Gabriel Palatchi Trio performs eclectic musical fusion in Red Deer

Gabriel Palatchi plans to take Red Deer fans on a musical journey through Latin, jazz, tango, funk, klezmer, gypsy, reggae, samba and electronica.

“For sure, you’ll never get bored,” he vows — at his jazz fusion trio’s show on Saturday, June 17, at the Elk’s Lodge in Red Deer.

“If it’s not your favourite genre, the next song will be your favourite! We mix it up a lot,” says Palatchi, with a chuckle.

The Argentinian pianist and composer has been touring this broad country every summer since being invited to his first Canadian outdoor music festival in B.C. in 2010.

“This is our eighth year,” says the instrumentalist, who’s performed at the Vancouver, Victoria, Quebec City, Kaslo, B.C. and Waterloo, Ont. Jazz Festivals, Red Deer’s now-on-hiatus Central Music Festival, among many stops.

The “fabulous” Canadian crowds keep drawing him back, adds Palatchi. “So far, it’s always been a good reception” — whether his trio is “funking it up” to festival fans dancing in front of outdoor stages, or slowing things down for more intimate audiences mostly interested in listening.

“We adjust our playing, (depending on) what audiences want,” says the pianist, who takes advantage of breaks between shows to camp in various scenic parts of Canada.

The 34-year-old started playing piano at age eight. As a teenager, he mostly listened to rock tunes. But after high school, he enrolled in classical music study at the Manuel de Falla Conservatory to get a good foundation.

Palatchi never thought he liked jazz. But his horizons were expanded when he enrolled at the Berklee International School in Argentina. This off-shoot of the Berklee School of Music in Boston exposed him to improvisation — and Palatchi found an exciting new outlet for his creativity.

The musician, who also studied with several Cuban “maestros,” including Chucho Valdez, has since recorded three albums, including Trivolution (2015). His music has received radio play from Alaska to Australia.

The Gabriel Palatchi Trio loves skipping boundaries between genres, slipping some Cuban music or Caribbean beats into a klezmer or Middle Eastern melody line. Palatchi performs with bassist Kerry Galloway, of Vancouver, and drummer Chema Gonzalez, of Mexico — the country where Palatchi spends the winter months preparing for more shows.

The pianist says he’s “married to my keyboard,” and he’s not kidding. Palatchi performs 43 concerts across Canada this summer, then heads to Europe for a multi-country fall tour.

For more information, or tickets, please visit www.centralmusicfest.com.

lmichelin@reddeeradvocate.com

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