Bandleader, composer, arranger, trumpeter, and vocalist recognized for his signature scat technique, Jerry Medina’s repertoire spans jazz, salsa, pop, symphonic orchestras, jazz big bands, urban styles, and musical theatre. He was a founding member of Puerto Rico’s then avant-garde group Batacumbele influencing what is today known as Afro-Caribbean jazz music. He is featured on two Grammy-winning albums by Eddie Palmieri, La Verdad, and Masterpiece, as well as Jon Secada and the Charlie Sepulveda Big Band’s 2018 Grammy-winning To Beny More With Love. Medina’s frequent collaborators have included an exhaustive list of jazz, salsa, and pop artists as Nestor Torres, NEA Latin Jazz master Papo Vazquez, John Santos, Herb Albert, William Cepeda, Tito Puente, Ruben Blades, and Marc Anthony. He has performed at The Lincoln Center, Smithsonian Institute, Madison Square Garden, Dominican Republic Jazz Festival, Holland’s North Sea Jazz Festival, Heineken International Jazz Fest, Festival Nacional Afrocaribeño and toured the world as a member of the legendary Fania All-Stars for 15 years. Medina was the voice for the Puerto Rico Tourism Company campaign and has been featured in cinema and television in Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights and Mozart in the Jungle for which he arranged, played trumpet, and recorded vocals. His work has also been featured in Spike Lee’s Netflix series, and She’s Gotta Have It. La Asociación y Fundación Alumni Colegial, in Puerto Rico, has commemorated Medina for his contribution to music towards the progress and development of Puerto Rico.
PHOTO: TOMAS PEÑA