Friday, 8 August 2014

Asturian Jazz: The Xaime Arias Trio at the Alambique, Gijon, Spain 7/8/2014

Here's a heads-up for a great band I saw last night at the Cafe Alambique in Gijon in the north of Spain.

The Xaime Arias Trio (Xaime is pronounced "shymi") are a local latin jazz trio who really deserve some wider recognition. They've been gigging locally here in the northern region of Asturias, Spain for a few years now and have even recorded an album. Xaime Arias plays very melodic keyboards, broad in range and somewhat influenced by the melodies to be heard in traditional Asturian folk music. He takes the Asturian influence and adds some blues and funk to create a very home grown kind of Asturian jazz. He is aided by Oscar Santos:on bass and the excellent Leonel Duarte on drums. 

The numbers tend to build slowly and drummer Duarte builds the tension locking into Arias' solos and creating a very funkified groove. It's loose and free but with Santos' bass keeping the band on course they can really lift off into some quite intense flights of percussive and dance oriented jazz improv. A kind of Latin Jazz power trio.

The 4 year-old clip below doesn't really do the band justice now but it's the only thing I could find by them on Youtube. The band (and we) deserve more. 

Very recommended. 


Here are some photos of the gig that I took with my phone.


more stranger than known

Asturias > Eight Miles High - Roger McGuinn

Gregory Porter - The Gijon Jazz Festival

The Alambique - Jazz Finds a Home in Northern Spain...

The Cool Sound of Asturian Jazz - Carlos Pizarro


  1. The guy that plays drums in those pictures is not Leonel Duarte, but Fernando Arias. As an update, you can find some more material here (published later than this post):