Jorge Sylvester ACE Collective

  • Band / Solo Performer
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Jazz, Caribbean, Free Jazz, World Fusion Afro Caribbean Experimental More...


Brooklyn NY United States

Sounds Like

Jorge Sylvester ACE Collective

Digital Location


Member since: 05/23/2012 Year Founded: 2001


Mail alt 16x12 Jorge Sylvester
Thumb jorge sylvester at the brucknerhaus 2010

Jorge Sylvester


Alto Saxophone [email protected]


  • Original material: 17 hrs : 15 min
  • Average Draw: 225
  • Largest crowd: 500
  • Have sound: No PA
  • Original Songs:
  • CDs released: 4
  • CDs sold: 1500
  • Digital songs sold: 100


The ACE Collective is a group of improvising musicians created and led by
saxophonist/composer/arranger Jorge Sylvester. An extension of the ACE Trio (alto saxophone, electric bass and drums), the ACE Collective includes three additional independent rhythmic and melodic elements: the voice, trumpet and piano expanding its harmonic colors, its scope of sound and its textural capacity. The music is original, new and experimental and draws from the AfroCaribbean Diaspora, jazz and the free music art forms.

A native of Colon, Republic of Panama, Sylvester's original compositions are indicative of the vast cultural mixture that is Central America. The ACE Collective utilizes the rich spectrum of rhythms from the Caribbean and other Latin American countries as a vehicle to create new and undiscovered rhythmic melodic lines within the jazz tradition. Collective and free improvisation is an essential part of the concept utilizing juxtaposition and retrograde as main components of the experimentation.

Afro-Caribbean rhythms and their relationship to the avant-garde music form have not been documented. Unlike the work of composers such as Charles Mingus, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie and others who used Afro-Caribbean rhythms in their works without experimenting with their rhythmic pulse, the compositional structure of the music of the ACE Collective goes beyond an absolute interpretation, and delves deeper into the core of the rhythms breaking them down and expanding the pulse into a myriad of complex configurations that tap into the original primal properties of the music itself, reflecting its history and its origin, unraveling its many transmutations and adaptations over time and discovering new
possibilities and applications within the tradition itself that are related to the avant-garde.

The poetry reflects the message of the compositions by telling the story of each piece and its historic relevance to the music adding an important educational dimension. Other compositions that are significant to the history of jazz music are also occasionally introduced into the performance highlighting certain lesser known but meaningful composers from the Caribbean.


November 28, 2013

Jorge Sylvester Ace Collective: Spirit Driven

In a 1967 interview with Jazz & Pop magazine, John Coltrane stated:
"I know that there are bad forces, forces put here that bring suffering to others and misery to the world, but I want to be the force which is truly for the good." In his lifetime and beyond, Coltrane has inspired artists to infuse their work with this mission, and certainly alto saxophonist and composer Jorge Sylvester can be counted as one of Coltrane's heirs. Spirit Driven is an 86-minute sonic feast by Sylvester and his ACE Collective that shows just how music and spirituality can intertwine. This is music that invokes forces for the good, played by people who feel these forces—and it also offers a cautionary tale about what happens to the world when these forces are absent.

The ACE (Afro-Caribbean Experimental) Collective is breaking new territory with its musical amalgamation of the Afro-Caribbean diaspora, the jazz tradition, and free music art-forms. Artists such as Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus and Dizzy Gillespie used Afro-Caribbean rhythms in their compositions, but their work didn't experiment with the pulses in these rhythms; part of what sets the ACE Collective apart is their expansion and reconfiguration of these pulses. In addition, the Collective includes poetry and storytelling in many of its pieces, and they also bring to light traditional songs from the Afro-Caribbean tradition. Clearly this music goes deep and wide, and the result is a multi-layered, multi-cultural aural banquet.

OONachrichten Kultur Medien - Linz, Austria

December 06, 2010
-Christoph Haunschmid

Jorge Sylvester - The ACE Collective
Brucknerhaus Linz, December 6, 2010 ******

Those who were expecting Calypso-singing Harry Belafonte clones must have been disappointed. The pieces composed by the Panamanian saxophonist use the rhythmic tradition as a basis for extended forays into the world of the contemporary. The young drummer Kenneth Grohowsky juggled the odd meters with exquisite ease. Sylvester's compositions are solid ground for exciting, improvisational excursions particularly by the singer and poet Nora McCarthy and the trumpeter Waldron Mahdi Ricks. The music could most readily be compared to Steve Coleman's Five Elements who made a big impression in St. Magdalena in October. In the next days the ACE Collective will record their new CD at Peter Guschlbauer's studio in Hagenberg. You have to look forward to that.

Christoph Haunschmid

"Ace Collective enthusiastically received in Linz"

TRIBES Magazine

March 09, 2009
Ramsey Ameen

Jorge Sylvester's distinctive alto saxophone sound is imbued with the volatility of Caribbean basin's complex mosaic, transformed and focused by the probing musical linguistics pioneered by the great saxophonists of modern jazz. Jorge's composer's imagination is the matchless structural coherence of his improvisational work.

Violinist, Composer Ramsey Ameen

All Music Guide Review

December 20, 2008
David R. Adler,,1084436,00.html?src=search&artist=Jorge+Sylvester

In The Ear Of The Beholder

Jorge Sylvester's Afro-Caribbean Experimental Trio

Sylvester's alto work is deeply rooted in bebop but fluent in the most modern of horn vocabularies.

With this album, he makes his mark as one of the more advanced, imaginative voices in Afro-Caribbean jazz.

Tour Dates