Hard hitting conguero, Johnny Blas has performed and recorded in the world of Jazz and Latin music for over 25 years. Charismatic and intense, Johnny is a seasoned performer whose musicality extends as a percussionist, saxophonist, composer and band leader.
Johnny and his band put on a fierce show with swing, energy and heat that can melt asphalt. Blas, a New York native influenced by the music of Mongo Santamaria, Ray Barretto, Armando Peraza, Dizzie Gillespie, Charlie Parker and David Sandborn, exhibits a sound that is stylish and funky, an infusion of Latin Funk and Jazz with an Afro-Caribbean groove.
As a conguero, Johnny's performances are passionate and fierce; his dynamic ability is displayed in both flashy solos as well as in more restrained interior lines. Johnny Blas, an innovative performer, bandleader and composer showcases many of his own original arrangments on five Latin Jazz CD recordings under the famed CuBop label and has earned critical praise in the Latin and Jazz music press.
Listed is a brief overview of past venues, artists and companies that Johnny has worked for or with:
KLON Radio, Bally's Total Fitness, Catalina Bar & Grill, Steamers Jazz Cafe, Spaghettini's Seal Beach, Playboy Jazz Festival, NAMM Show, Cubby Bear Chicago, Navy Pier Chicago, and various Corporate and Private Events.
The Jaime Fox Show,
Dr Pepper Commercial with
Celia Cruz and Paulina Rubio
Johnny's resume includes working with or for top artists such as:
Francisco Aguabella, Mindi Abair, Chuck Loe, Boney James, Jackiem Joyner, Greg Vail, Marc Quinones, Brenda Russel, Najee, Dave Pike, Greg Adams, Evelyn Champagne King, Max Bennett, Bobby Allende, Terry Gibbs, Dave Koz, Poncho Sanchez and many more.
Opened for: Oro Solido, Eric Benet, La Sonora Poncena, Celia Cruz, Willie Colon, Ruben Blades, Gran Combo de Puerto Rico, Oscar D'Leon, Con Funk Shun and many more
Original music used by: Miller Beer Company, Dockers, Hermosa Beach Festival, The New Fantasy Island, Levis Strauss, Benson & Hedges
“With a herd of trombones, a driving swing, jazz cat Dave Pike on vibes and a percussion section what will melt asphalt, Skin and Bones is a summer sizzler of some fresh Latin jazz from an emerging talent.
Originally from NYC, Blas is a congero with some old time chops a la Ray Barretto and Mongo Santamaria who is infusing those influences with a vibrant ensemble that doesn't let up."
Latin Beat Magazine
"A summer sizler of some fresh Latin jazz fron an emerging talent...the solos are exceptional, with Blas proving why he is boss as he tears into the cueros with authority and excitment."
Latin Beat Magazine
"Among Latin's top 10 bands!" - Max Salazar, Jazz Historian