Benny Maldonado

Benny Maldonado

As a producer & audio engineer, Dr. Benny Maldonado enjoys vision-casting projects with other artists and his students with the aim to create uncharted, heartfelt music. His equation of musical genres to a masterful puzzle-art mural compels him to search for the missing puzzle pieces of music that are yet to be placed within the mural of reconnoitered music. In 2015, Dr. Benny Maldonado helped his colleague, José Valentino, find one of the missing puzzle pieces of uncharted, heartfelt music, by serving as the percussionist and arranger for the album, José Valentino Ruiz & The Latin Jazz Ensemble featuring Giovanni Hidalgo: “I Make You Want To Move”, which received a 16th Annual Latin-GRAMMY® Award nomination for Best Latin Jazz Album. Throughout the years 2011-2016, Benny’s contributions to numerous albums with José Valentino – “A Walk With God”, “Ahora Más Que Nunca”, “The CrossMatch Vamp” – lead to being awarded 20 DownBeat Music Awards [the most prestigious jazz education competition] for the following categories: Best Jazz Group, Best Blues/Pop/Rock Group, Best Latin Group, Best Studio Engineered Recording, and Best Live Engineered Recording.

As a first-call percussionist, Dr. Benny Maldonado has performed and/or recorded with major Salsa/Latin jazz musical luminaries such as Dave Valentin, Cano Estremera, Eddie Santiago, Hector Tricoche, Roberto Roena, Brenda K Starr, Pete”El Conde” Rodriguez, Paquito Guzman, Quique Domenech, Nacho Sanabria, Lisette Melendez who is a well reknown Freestyle artist, Johnny Rivera, Tito Allen, Adalberto Santiago, Charlie Cruz, Nino Segarra, George Lamond, Luisito Carrion, Cheo Andújar, Hansel y Raul. He has performed timbales several times on television stations such as Telemundo, Univision, CBS, and NBC. In 2014, Dr. Benny Maldonado participated as an extra in the Hollywood featured film, “Sex Ed”, which was directed by Isaac Feder featuring Haley Joel Osment (from the movie “The Sixth Sense” and “Forest Gump”). As a uncanning educator and clinician, Dr. Benny Maldonado represents Soultone Cymbals.

In Florida, Dr. Benny Maldonado served as one of the percussionists for Trio CubaSon, which was the House Band for Emilio and Gloria Estefan’s Bongos Cuban Café in Disney Springs, Orlando. His performance trajectory includes having performed in over 800 gigs in dance venues, clubs, sweet sixteens, and corporate events. He is also the director of music education at The Simone Salsa Dance Studios in Tampa, Fl where he gives dynamic, collaborative applied-lessons in percussion studies and ensemble development to students of all ages. Additionally, his tenure as session-percussionist for Paris Recording Studio in Brandon, FL has allowed Dr. Benny Maldonado the opportunity to record percussion (i.e., timbales, congas, bongos, cowbell, guiro) for a plethora of albums and music videos of some of Florida’s, Puerto Rico’s, and New York’s top Salsa and Latin jazz acts. Benny also runs his own recording studio out of his home in Odessa, Florida called YnneBMusic Studio where he has recorded upcoming artists from all over the state of Florida reaching the from California all the way to New York and also reaching Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. When on the road, Dr. Benny Maldonado is also part of The Bay Kings Band which is one of the largest or the largest Band and Entertainment franchises in the United States where he gets to bring magic to every event from a wedding reception to all major corporations and private and public events on percussion/Drums/Back up vocals and just pure energy! He also performs with two Tribute Bands directed by Todd Plant called China Grove ( “Doobie Brothers Tribute”) and Supernatural Band (“Tribute to Carlos Santana”) on back up vocals and percussion – both ensembles travel nationally performing at numerous jazz, blues, and funk music festivals. Benny has also been a working member Pedro Bullady’s “Orquesta INFINIDAD” one of Tampa Bays longest salsa bands which is on their 30th year Anniversary with an upcoming album release mid 2020, check out the bands Holiday rendition of “A Christmas Song” where Benny arranged the percussion and recorded Timbales, Bongo, Bells, and minor percussion at his home studio, back up vocals as well as co-director in 2019. Benny also worked on the legendary Ray Olan’s “La Nueva Sason” album titled “ Regreso Del Futuro ( Return From The Future ) which is available on vinyl, Ray has a special name for those who he considers a “Jedi” and he calls Benny “ Yoda” for his ability and willingness to elevate whatever musical tasks thrown unto him. Benny is also a part of the latest recording of La Paris All-Stars newest 2019 production titled “RnB and Pop Hits in Salsa” which is a very hot album highly recommended by many and available right now on all digital formats as well as hard copies. Benny is currently working on new projects such as Trevor Bystrom’ newest album where Benny takes lead on percussion with World, AfroCuban rhythms.

In 2016, Dr. Benny Maldonado received a Doctorate of Christian Music degree from Truth and Mercy Institute for Advanced Ministry Studies for his outstanding contributions an ethnodoxological scholar and educator who has utilized his gifts to help, empower, and inspire lower socio-economic status communities to progress in their academic and vocational pursuits. Dr. Benny Maldonado’s research interests and dissertation focuses on teaching church musical groups how to incorporate musical elements and rhythms that are unique to the populace’s cultural identity within American genres of music as a means of preserving cultural heritage and promoting cultural inclusivity among society. Frequently, Dr. Benny Maldonado travels with his family-based music ministry called “By The Spirit Only”, which travels to various churches across the nation presenting Christian musical worship utilizing Puerto Rican rhythms. The Ministry is currently working on the latest production where Benny is sharing percussion ideas with his wife Judit Maldonado who also plays percussion, Co-Engineer and Co-Producing, the release is scheduled for mid 2020.

After successfully producing and recording for other artists, Dr. Benny Maldonado is working on producing his own albums and singles that reflect his musical passions – Salsa, Latin jazz, House, and Funk. In Summer 2018, his new single, “Suelta Tu Celular (Let Go Of Your Cellphone)” was released and is available on iTunes, CDBaby, Spotify and all digital format stores, was single is on the ballot to be considered for a Latin Grammy nomination along side 3 other projects ( “ Tecun “ as Co-Producer, “ Cosquillas “ as Percussionist, and Co-Producer, (Paris All-Stars album “ Los Escogidos” as an Artist with Suelta Tu Celular.) for the upcoming 20th annual Latin-GRAMMYS November 2019 . He continues to be an on-demand percussionist with the capabilities of offering recording services and Skype lessons from the comforts of his home.

Now as head percussionist/Drummer with Trevor Bystrom Benny is taking the band to a higher level of performance and sounds with his wife on minor percussion and both on back up vocals. 2023 looks very promising

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