Artist Review: Itzel Salinas (part 1: from Mexico to Boston)


I’m back after a very busy week (month perhaps?). Thank you for the feedback on my reviews! I hope you’ve liked my reviews on Yanni and Pink Floyd so far (remember you can always make me suggestions for reviewing anything you wish).

This week I will move from live concerts reviewing into a very interesting and nice young lady I met this summer in Berklee Boston.

Itzel Salinas (Mexico)

Itzel Salinas (Mexico)

Itzel Salinas is a young tenor sax player from Ciudad de Mexico. She started playing sax at the age of 16 influenced by John Coltrane, Charles Mingus and Charlie Parker.

One year from her initial studies, Itzel had the chance to be part of the Mexican international cultural exchange program hosted by Carnegie Hall. There, she played live with Sax player Miguel Zenón (Puerto Rico), which as she says, encouraged her to develop more studies in Jazz.

In addition to her Jazz studies, Itzel also developed classical studies at UNAM music school in Mexico. Today, she defines her playing style as a mix of classic, traditional and contemporary jazz, avant-grade, free jazz and tonus music.

During her musical journey, Itzel has being taught by a huge list of well known musicians such as: Sam Newsome, Nando Michelin, Adrián Terrazas-González, Aaron Siegel, Aldo Salvent, Alex Terrier, Wade Matthews, Cyro Baptista, Oscar Stagnaro and others. To this list we must add all the international musicians which she has played live with, such as: Yoron Israel, Diane Richardson, Charlie Kohlhase, John Kordalewski, Arnie Cheatham, Bill Lowe, Sean Berry, Kurtis Rivers, Seth Meitch, Jerry Sabatini, Wes Brown, Al Patterson.


Itzel’s first approach to Berklee was taking online jazz improvisation classes with faculty member Gary Burton.

This year (Jan, 2014) for the first time, Berklee organized the first version of “Berklee Latino”, a program focused on bringing the Berklee culture for Latin American musicians. The program took place in Mexico City, where Itzel took part. As a result, she was awarded with a full scholarship to attend Berklee’s “5 week performance Program”.

See for more information of Berklee Latino Program taken place this 2014.

Some quotes of Itzel at Berklee Blogs, regarding her experience this summer:

“Five week (…) was not just a musical experience, but was surrounded by situations and experiences that made this something completely essential, something that made me realice what really surrounds beyond being a professional musician in the actual world”

“You have to set daily goals being at the limit of what it means to you a big challenge, and be careful in the line of what could become a musical frustration, because you might not see progress and leave your goals at half (…) it is crucial to be patient, beyond everything, because in the end it’s a process that doesn’t happen from one day to another.”

See more of Itzel’s Berklee blog review at

Itzel and me, outside BPC, Berklee, Boston

Itzel and me, outside BPC, Berklee, Boston

Meeting Itzel was a real pleasure, I could see how she was always willing to collaborate or help people in school. We shared real good conversations there, about music and goals in life. The human factor is extremely important to me, regardless the musical quality.

Today, Itzel is part of a musical project called “Deimusaranea”, with very high- trained musicians from Mexico. Their new 3 song demo was finished while we were in Boston at that time, and was sent to Itzel’s mail-box at mid-August.

I feel very honoured to have with me today this fresh-original copy of their new demo, which was a gift from Itzel to myself.

Stay tuned for the next post! I will be talking about Itzel’s project “DEIMUSARANEA” and reviewing this awesome piece of art.

until next time!


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