The Chale Icaza Trio performs in the tradition of a mainstream jazz trio format, yet with a very contemporary and innovative sound. The group explores different rhythms like latin and swing, and adds a loosenes and a feel that is very personal. The trio as a unit is very much in touch with each other rhythmic feeling, displaying a great sense of intuitiveness. They play as a unit at all times and take the listener on a trip on each tune. The trio was formed out of another band they played together in, the manuel engel trio. Therefore, they share a common language in the art of the piano trio, as well as a respect for the history of jazz along with a desire to explore new avenues.
Drummer/composer Chale Icaza was born in Panama City, Panama. While in Panama, he experienced Caribbean music, reggae, and calypso, and was part of an experimental band that lasted eight years called Ties. Icaza became interested in jazz when he was twenty by listening to the John Coltrane Quartet. He then pursued a study of music theory and improvisation. Icaza was the leader of the band Quarteto Sonadora, which opened for Jerry Gonzalez and Fort Apache in Panama. He attended the National Conservatory in Panama, and moved from Panama to Boston to study at the Berklee College of Music, and then later moved to New York to continue his studies at the New School University. He has toured Panama and Costa Rica, and currently performs in NYC with different groups.
Pianist/composer Manuel Engel moved from Switzerland to NYC to study at the New School University. He has toured in Switzerland and Europe, and currently performs in NYC. He has played in different international festivals, and has been awarded a recording contract and a “Chrysler Jazz Award.” Engel is the leader of his group “Manuel Engel 5” and has worked and studied with many great performers.
Bassist/composer Gary Glickman moved from California to New York to study and perform jazz. He leads a trio that plays his own compositions and has recorded in California with the David Creamer group. Eight months ago he joined Chale Icaza and Manuel Engel to work as a jazz trio, and he is currently involved in several music projects.