Alamo WebAssistant Professor

Juan Álamo (Assistant Professor) is an internationally known performer, composer, and educator. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music, and Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees with Jazz as related field from the University of North Texas.

Originally from Cidra, Puerto Rico, Dr. Álamo has presented solo recitals at universities and percussion and jazz festivals throughout the United States, Europe, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. He has been featured as a soloist and with Jazz ensembles in television and radio shows in Puerto Rico, Mexico, Venezuela and the United States.

Dr. Álamo has recorded and shared the stage performing in collaboration with renowned artists such as Keiko Abe, William Cahn, Ney Rosauro, Orlando Cotto, Steve Shick, Tito Puente, John Wooton, Dave Samuels, Michael Spiro, Alfredo Naranjo, and Ted Piltzecker. He has performed and recorded with the San Juan Pops and played the Classical orchestral repertoire with the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Krzyszt Penderecki and Sergiu Comissiona.

His first solo marimba recording “Remembrance” was released in 2007. It features standard repertory as well as two of his compositions for marimba. In 2014, Dr. Álamo released his second CD, entitled “Marimjazzia”, featuring original compositions and arrangements of jazz standards such as Afro Blues and Waltz for Debby. Marimjazzia was selected to represent Parma Records at the 58th Grammy Awards in the category of “Best Latin Jazz Album,” and “Best Instrumental Solo”. In the spring of 2017, Dr. Álamo will be releasing “Pursuing Freedom” with Albany records featuring new works – commissions and original compositions – for marimba.

Also as a composer, Dr. Álamo has several pieces published by major publishing companies such as; Innovative Percussion, Drop 6 Media, C. Alan Publication and Mallet Work Inc. Dr. Álamo collaborated with Arthur Lipner creating the Jazz vibes book “Milt Jackson: Transcribed Solos of the Master.” He is also the author of “Four Mallet Music for the Modern Marimba Player,” a technique and pedagogical method for marimba that includes a collection of original etudes for beginners and intermediate-level marimba players. This book has been used as part of the curriculum of several universities in the USA, Europe as well as in Central and South America. The book has received accolades from renowned percussionists and teachers:

“This book contains just the right amount of information, technical challenge and musical guidance to make it an essential source for any percussionist with the desire to gain greater facility and musical expression as a marimbist. I highly recommend this book….” Christopher Deane (University of North Texas)

 

“In this book Dr. Alamo presents fun and interesting studies for the aspiring 4 mallet player. A much needed and very refreshing approach!” Thomas Burritt (University of Texas, Austin)

 

“An excellent addition to the four-mallet method repertoire… A valuable resource for the percussionist and non-percussionist educator.” Orlando Cotto (University of Delaware)

Dr. Alamo is a performing artist and clinician for Yamaha, Meinl Percussion and Encore Mallets Inc. He also has its own signature marimba mallets designed by Encore Mallets Inc. Dr. Álamo is a member of the Percussive Arts Society, Kappa Kappa Psi and is artist-clinician for Encore Mallets Inc. His teachers include Jose Torres, Jose Alicea, Christopher Deane, Mark Ford, Dr. Robert Schietroma, and Ed Smith.

More information about Dr. Álamo’s artistic career, compositions, recordings and performance schedule can be found in his personal web site at, www.juanalamo.com.

  • Office: 1111 Kenan Music Building
  • Email: jalamo@email.unc.edu

The Downfall of the Arawak (2016) for Marimba and Percussion Ensemble
Premiered at the North Carolina PAS Day of Percussion on April 2, 2016

Solace (2015) for Marimba
Premiered at Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music on November 21, 2015

Nostalgia (2015) for Marimba
Premiered at Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music on November 21, 2015

Albizu’s Dream (2015) for Jazz Quintet
Premiered at Sharp 9 Gallery, Durham N.C. on September 19, 2015

El Magnifico (2015) for Jazz Quintet
Premiered at Sharp 9 Gallery, Durham N.C. on September 19, 2015

La Querendona (2014) for vibraphone and marimba
Premiered at the University of Delaware on October 15, 2014

Pursuing Freedom (2014) for marimba
Premiered at UNC-CH on April 10, 2014

Estampas Borinqueñas (2013) for marimba
Premiered at NC State University on September 5, 2013

Azureus (2013) for marimba
Premiered at the 2nd Annual Asheville Percussion Festival on June 17, 2013

El Morro (2012) for jazz sextet (piano, bass, drums, trumpet, tenor saxophone and vibraphone), 6’
Premiered at UNC-CH on February 7, 2013

Petronila (2013): for jazz quartet (piano, bass, drums and vibraphone)
Premiered at UNC-CH on February 7, 2013

Memories of an Unforgettable Love (2012) for marimba, vibes, timpani, chimes, glock and percussion
Premiered in Santiago, Chile on June 1, 2014

Boriken (2011) for marimba and percussion ensemble
Premiered Percussion Art Society Convention, November 10, 2011

I Will See You Again (2010) for solo marimba
Premiered at Patagonia, Argentina Percussion Festival on June 20, 2010

Three Sketches for Snare Drum Quartet (2009)
Premiered at Howard Payne University on November 22, 2009

Guajira for My Father (2009) for solo marimba
Premiered at Chiapas, Mexico Marimba Festival on June 10, 2008

Remembrance (2007) for solo marimba
Premiered at Howard Payne University on October, 4 2007

Song for My Mother (2007) for solo marimba
Premiered at Howard Payne University on October, 4 2007

Etude for Percussion Quartet (2004)
Premiered at Howard Payne University on November 20, 2005

Publications: Recordings, Scores and Articles

2016 – Azureus (for marimba solo). Published by C. Alan Publications Inc.

2016 – I Will See You Again (for marimba). Published by C. Alan Publications Inc.

2016 – Memories of an Unforgettable Love (Marimba & Percussion Ensemble). – C. Alan Publications

2015 – 360˚ Jazz Initiative, Distracted Society (Álamo, marimba, vibraphone, percussion) – Summit Records

2015 – Alison Arnold and Jonathan Kramer: What in the World is Music? (Álamo, conga video performance), published by Routledge

2014 – Marimjazzia (composer, arranger and performer) PARMA/Big Round Records

2014 – Lee Weisert, Wild Arc – (Álamo, percussion) – New Focus

2012 – Essential Strategies for Jazz Improvisation: Learning to speak the language of jazz, published by Percussive Notes Magazine, Vol. 50, No. 1. January 2012, pp. 16-19.

2010 – Four Mallet Music for the Modern Marimba Player (marimba method). Published by Drop 6 Media

2010 – Orlando Cotto, Landmarks (Álamo, vibraphone & Percussion) – Independent label

2010 – Charanga Samaritana, Traditional Charanga Update (Álamo, timbales) – Independent label

2008 – Milt Jackson: “Transcribed Solos from the Master” (Jazz Vibes Book). Published by Mallet Works Music, Inc.

2008 – A Performance Guide And Theoretical Study of Keiko Abe’s Marimba d’ Amore and Prism Rhapsody for Marimba and Orchestra. DMA dissertation thesis, University of North Texas.

2008 – Remembrance (for marimba solo). Published by Innovative Percussion.

2008 – Song for My Mother (for marimba solo). Published by Innovative Percussion.

2008 – Etude for Percussion Quartet. Published by Drop 6 Media, Inc.

2007 – Juan Álamo Remembrance – Marimbisimo Records

2007 – Snarky Puppy, The World Is Getting Smaller (Álamo, percussion) – SiTMoM Records

2006 – UNT Wind Symphony, Time Pieces (Álamo, timpani) – GIA Publications

2006 – Wild Hands (for Marimba duo). Published by Drop 6 Media, Inc.

2005 – Orlando Cotto, Wild Hands (Álamo, marimba) – Independent label