She’s from Spain, and he hails from Colombia, and Latin DNA is certainly a factor in the symbiotic quality of the music when Ona Kiri and Alejandro Arenas perform together.
The main chemical ingredient, however, is a shared love of jazz and its infinite possibilities. And talent, of course. Music being the universal language and all, these two speak it fluently.
Kirei and Arenas guested on The Catalyst Sessions Wednesday, in advance of a livestreaming show they’ll be doing Saturday from thestudio@620.
Kirei is a singer/songwriter who came to the United States three years ago with her husband, Venezuelan jazz pianist Pablo Arencibia. Early on, the couple crossed paths with the bay area jazz trio La Lucha, whose bassist is Arenas. They’ve all written, recorded and performed together in different configurations ever since.
“We talked for hours, talking about our life stories as immigrants, specifically as musicians and immigrants and coming here to adapt to a completely different culture,” Arenas said of that first meeting. “And all the things that come with it.”
There were a lot of laughs during the interview, which included Kirei’s first impressions of Florida, a discussion of Lucha’s upcoming Halloween concerts (watch the video for an explanation of Alejandro’s cool new moustache) and the differences between jazz audiences in Spain and the United States.
There’s a song at the beginning, and another at the end. Both are exquisite.
For details on Orilla, the duo’s Saturday livestream, click here.