Tomas Peña: Editor-in-Chief, Journalist, Contributing Writer
“Tomas Peña is a pioneer in documenting jazz and Latin music; one of the rare writers with the background and experience who is truly qualified to comment on both genres and all their permutations. He has a great ear, an encyclopedic knowledge honed by years of being on the scene, and an unfailing sense of adventure that drives him to seek out the newest trends in music and recognize yet to be discovered, artists. His blog is a unique resource of wide-ranging and in-depth articles on the most significant recordings and performances happening in New York – and the musicians who create them. He shines a light on cutting edge work that might not be known about if not for him. As a presenter of new music, I rely on Jazzdelapena.com to get the word out to the world.” Dita Sullivan, Curator New Dimensions in Latin Jazz, The Dance of Eleggua, Midnight Rumba
“Tomas Peña is one of the most knowledgeable journalists in today’s Latin-Jazz scene. He supports the newer generation of artists and his writings are full of passion and great sensitivity for the music. I recommend you to navigate in Jazzdelapena.com to keep yourself updated on what is happening – or about to happen in the music.” Dafnis Prieto, Drummer, Composer, and Educator.
“A graduate of Empire State College with a dual major in journalism and Latin American studies, Tomas Peña has spent years applying his knowledge and writing skills to the promotion of great musicians. A specialist in the crossroads between jazz and Latin music, Peña has written extensively on the subject. His writing has appeared throughout the internet while he worked as a contributing writer for All About Jazz, Jazz.com, and The Latin Jazz Network. Throughout his work, Peña has conducted over 100 interviews with artists, building connections and getting the true scoop on the music. He worked in radio as the host of Under the Radar on WFDU 89.1 FM and infused his local community with musical knowledge as a member of The New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Advisory Board. Peña carries experience and insight into his work.” Chip Boaz – Editor, the Latin Jazz Corner
COMMENTATOR: CENTRO (HUNTER COLLEGE), Meet the Author, Basilo Serrano – Puerto Rican Women From the Jazz Age – Stories of Success (Virtual, March 10, 2021).
BORICUA PIONEERS: LOST IN TRANSLATION – Moderated a panel discussion at the 2019 Jazz Congress (Jazz at Lincoln Center) about the contributions of Puerto Ricans to North American Jazz. Panelists included educator, author, historian Basilios Serrano, Puerto Rican icon William Cepeda and Chamber Music America Jazz Program Director, Gargi Shinde. Also, contributed an article re Boricua Pioneer, Rafael Escudero to Centro Voices. See www.jazzdelapena.com (PR Project).
JAZZDELAPENA.COM, Editor, and Chief – Contributing Writer 2014 to Present Jazzdelapena.com is an online publication. It provides up-to-the-minute coverage of the New York music scene and the music community and includes artist profiles, interviews, CD/Performance reviews, The New York Report, breaking music news, and much more. Jazzdelapena.com is a hub for what’s happening in New York and beyond.
LATIN JAZZ NETWORK, Co-Editor, Contributing Writer 2000 to PRESENT – Based out of Toronto, Canada, Latin Jazz Network was founded by Editor, Webmaster, Danilo Navas. In 2000, I joined the Latin Jazz Network’s staff as a contributing writer. One year later I was elevated to the position of New York Co-Editor, which entails CD and performance reviews, artist profiles, interviews, historical pieces, and commentary. Over the years, I have conducted over 100 interviews with the most prominent artists in the world of jazz, Latin jazz, Salsa, and World Music and covered the New York jazz and Latin music scenes extensively.
CONTRIBUTING WRITER 2001 to Present – www.jazz.com, www.allaboutjazz.com, www.latinjazzcorner.com, www.vickisolasalsa.com, www.descarga.com, Hot House, Chamber Music America magazine.
WFDU, 89.1 FM – Producer, Broadcaster, Co-Host 2006-2007 – I produced and hosted a one-hour show entitled, Under the Radar for WFDU, 89.1 FM as part of Vickie Sola’s long-running radio show, Que Viva La Musica. The segment’s strived to provide a platform for established and emerging artists deserving of wider recognition. In December of 2010, I appeared as a guest of the radio show host, Daro Behroozi of WKCR 89.1 FM on The Musician’s Show, where I joined pianist, Michele Rosewoman in a discussion on the history of the venue, Soundscape.
NEW JERSEY CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS (NJPAC) Advisory Board – In 2006, I participated in Alternate Routes, a year-long series of performances complemented by educational, humanities and residency programs. Alternate Routes “mission” included identifying and establishing relationships with artists, educators, scholars, civic and government leaders and other resources in the community; identifying cultural, educational and civic and government agencies and institutions that facilitated the implementation of the festival; identifying and collaborating with organizations for educational and residency activities, as well as other support programs and attending regularly scheduled meetings.
February 10, 2017: Journalist Giovanni Russonnello of the New York Times interviewed Tomas Peña for the article, “Latin Jazz is Booming. Look Beyond the Grammys to Find It.”
CONTRIBUTING WRITER: HOT HOUSE MAGAZINE (2017)
CONSULTANT, PUBLICITY: TRUTH REVOLUTION RECORDING COLLECTIVE (2017)
JAZZ FESTIVAL COVERAGE – 2015 San Jose Jazz Festival, California, 2015 Nice Jazz Festival, France, 2008 Puerto Rico Heineken Jazz Festival 2005, Toronto Jazz Festival, Canada.
EDUCATION – Empire State College, New York: Bachelor’s Degree of Arts – Journalism/Latin American Studies. Borough of Manhattan Community College: Associate’s Degree – Liberal Arts