Wild Rice - Tito Gato
Spontaneity and fine musicianship paired
with no-holds-barred passion and fiery
rhythms comprise the key elements that
make popular Atlanta Latin Jazz band
Wild Rice one of the most exciting bands
on the scene. Wild Rice truly redefines
jazz with addictive beats inspired by the
music of Brazil, Venezuela, Cuba, and
Puerto Rico, among other tropical
countries. Perhaps the best description of the band’s music comes from the group’s founder
Daniel Padrón who aptly characterizes the music as “a celebration of life.”
Now in its 19 year, Wild Rice is one of the longest-running bands in Atlanta. The group is
comprised of six respected and sought-after professional Atlanta-area musicians–Daniel Padrón
(band leader/founder, keyboards, piano), Jason Passmore (soprano / alto sax), Jason Matthias
(tenor sax), L.A. Tuten (bass), Reece Harris (drums), Gaurav Malhotra (percussion). When first
formed, Wild Rice was a jazz quartet featuring a female vocalist but over the years the group has
morphed with the times and is now primarily an instrumental band that welcomes vocalists on
certain arrangements. The unique and uncommon band name “Wild Rice” comes from one of
Daniel Padrón’s original compositions of the same name. This upbeat yet melodious piece is
about a lively and passionate multi-cultural wedding ceremony and melds many different music
styles together including African and Latin. The name seemed fitting for the band as well since its
music brings all cultures together.
One of the elements that set Wild Rice apart for the crowd is that most of the compositions are
original pieces created by the band’s creative force Daniel Padrón. Having been born in Caracas,
Venezuela but raised in the States Daniel’s musical perspective is unique and knows little
boundaries. Daniel says, “Each tune is a journey where you start at home, go in different
directions and different places but always have a sense of return, a sense of everything coming
back together.” The music has been described as “distinctive” and “spirited” with “blistering
grooves that stir the imagination.” One thing is for certain: Wild Rice’s dynamic rhythms stimulate
the senses and quite simply force you to get up and move your body to the contagious tempos.
A long-time fan favorite at festivals, local gathering places, wedding receptions, private parties
and corporate events, Wild Rice also performs live at some of Atlanta’s most well-known events
such as wildly-popular Inman Park Festival and others. The band performs regularly at Bhojanic
(www.bhojanic.com) in Decatur. More performance information can be found on the band’s
In 2008 Wild Rice released its first-ever recording - Tell Me More About Spain. This highlyanticipated debut album features 14 peppery Latin-flavored tracks; all but one of the songs are
original compositions by Daniel Padrón. The buzz about the album is overwhelmingly positive
and rave reviews are sure to follow Tell Me More About Spain is available on the web at
www.wildrice.net, at live performances and www.CDbaby.com.
Most are hard-pressed to categorize the Wild Rice sound but all agree that the catchy melodies
and solid, infectious Latin tempos inspire people to move, dance and enjoy life.
PR and booking contact:
Carla Boardman Padrón
• Atlanta Jazz Festival: 1996, 2003
• Café 290
• Churchill Grounds
• Deacon Burton's Grill
• Fernbank Museum
• The Freight Room
• Inman Park Festival (2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2009)
• Java Monkey
• Just Jazz
• Kalo's Coffee House
• Loca Luna
• Little Five Points Pub
• Sabroso Tapas Lounge
• Sweet Melissa's
Featured Spotlight 2
Oct 24 | 18:55
Frontman Daniel Padrón certainly has his systems of gestures and body language down as he leads the Latin sextet jazz
band Wild Rice. Band members Paul Poovey (trumpet), Jason Matthias (saxophone), John Hancotte (bass), Reece Harris
(drums), and Gaurav Malhotra (percussion) follow the written charts provided during rehearsals and blesses Atlanta with
their tropical rhythms inspired by sounds of Brazil, Venezuela, Cuba and Puerto Rico. One of the separating factors of Wild
Rice from other Latin jazz bands is that their compositions are original pieces created by Daniel (lead, keyboard, and piano).
Their performances at local venues focus on the creativity of the band and songwriting capability, however at smaller events
it is with pleasure that they play what s requested.
Wild Rice has had the chance to play at local Atlanta festivals such as the Inman Park festival, Douglasville Concerts on the
Plaza, and the Atlanta Jazz festival. “We re hoping to land other venues such as the Georgia Aquarium to perform. We do
corporate events and wedding receptions too,” Daniel mentions. In July 2008, Wild Rice released their first CD- Tell Me More
About Spain, but aren t at present doing any new CDs. “We ve had to take a short break from the music to attend to a personal
matter,” laments Daniel, “but Im looking forward to getting another CD together in the future and maybe doing a music
video for one of our tracks. My main focus right now is to penetrate new venues and that s where I hope Wild Rice will take
us moving forward.”
Write and Groove also got a chance to talk to Carla Padrón, Band Manager, about the business side of Wild Rice:
W&G- What were/are some of your biggest challenges in managing the band in terms of booking?
Carla: Getting club owners to listen to the demo first. The jazz scene in Atlanta is like a small town in a big city. Once we re in
the band does well, but you ve got to get your foot in the door. I tell everyone that I married into the business!
W&G- How long has Wild Rice been in business?
Carla: 18 years. Right now we have a small fan base but we re trying to get into more public venues.
You can listen to Wild Rice, check out their band bio, and keep up-to-date at their website www.wildrice.net
Carla Boardman Padrón
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