Pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba's playing combines advanced musical concepts and formidable technique with emotional immediacy and hypnotizing grooves. Born in Havana, Rubalcaba grew up surrounded by Cuban musical heritage; his father was a pianist whose home was a gathering place for prominent Cuban musicians. Rigorous classical study and a passion for American Bebop further shaped his artistic growth, and he was performing extensively in Cuba and at festivals around the world by 1986, when a chance meeting in Havana with bassist Charlie Haden opened the door for him to reach audiences in the United States. Rubalcaba's recordings have earned multiple Grammy awards, and as a performer he is in constant demand, leading his own groups and collaborating on a dazzling variety of projects with artists like Haden, Joe Lovano, Dave Holland and Chucho Valdez. Rubalcaba's exciting new CD is a new step on his artistic mission to express the beauty and vitality of Cuban musical culture in a contemporary international context.