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Andres Levin

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Genres  Latin, Pop, Rock, R&B
Role  Record producer
Years active  1980–present

Labels  Funmachine
Albums  President Alien
Name  Andres Levin
Music group  Yerba Buena
Andres Levin Andres Levin Photos Arrivals at the El Museo39s Gala Zimbio
Occupation(s)  Producer, film maker, song-writer, musician, composer, philanthropist, arranger, guitarist
Instruments  Guitar, bass, keyboards, programming
Associated acts  Yerba Buena, Cucu Diamantes, Chaka Khan, John Legend, Natalie Merchant, David Byrne, D'Angelo, Caetano Veloso
Movies  Amor Cronico, The Other Woman
Similar People  Cucu Diamantes, Miguel Bose, Jorge Perugorria, Arto Lindsay, Yotuel Romero

Education  Berklee College of Music

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Andres Levin is a Venezuelan-born American record producer, bandleader, filmmaker, recording engineer and philanthropist. Levin won a Grammy Award in 2009 for his production of the In the Heights cast recording. His Grammy-nominated Latin fusion band Yerba Buena was founded along with Cuban-American singer Cucu Diamantes.

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Andres Levin www3picturesgizimbiocomPicturehousePresents

Levin has been called the "master-chef of urban fusion" by the Los Angeles Times.

Andres Levin Andres Levin Pictures Photos amp Images Zimbio

Early life

Andres Levin Cucu Diamantes Andres Levin Pictures Photos amp Images Zimbio

Levin was born in Caracas, Venezuela. Since his father is a musician and producer as well, Levin was surrounded by music. He began playing guitar at age 10 and was soon immersed in the musical world. In 1988, Levin took advantage of a full scholarship at Berklee School of Music in Boston, Massachusetts before studying composition at Juilliard in New York City. While in New York, Levin worked at Skyline studios and was soon hired by producer Nile Rodgers as a full-time Synclavier programmer and arranger. With Rodgers, Levin worked with artists such as the B-52's, Diana Ross, INXS, and The Vaughan Brothers.

Yerba Buena

Together with Diamantes, Levin formed the band Yerba Buena. Before Yerba Buena, Levin had worked in several disparate genres, including R&B, soul, and Latin. Levin said that the same year the band was founded, he and "CuCu were in Nigeria, Cuba, and Bahia... [and] those influences combined to form the Yerba Buena sound." Levin has also said that even though Yerba Buena "experiments with many influences, the basis of the group is inspired by the African and Cuban diaspora, where both worlds meet. The music is a bridge between the two cultures."

Music Has No Enemies

Founded by Levin and Diamantes, Music Has No Enemies is a non-profit organization that is designed "to usher the entertainment industry in a new direction toward the widespread promotion of philanthropy". The organization has worked on several projects to promote social justice and political activism:

  • Red Hot and Cuba at Brooklyn Academy of Music-World Aids Day 2012
  • TEDxHabana
  • Grammy Foundation-Grammy Career Day at Pace University
  • Orphaned Star Fish
  • Innocence in Danger
  • Life is Precious
  • Plastic Pollution Coalition
  • TED.org
  • TEDxHabana 2014

    Andres, along with Diamantes and Perugorria organized the first-ever TEDx conference in Cuba, TEDxHabana took place on November 15, 2014 and will continue to be a yearly (or bi-yearly) event.

    TEDxHabana 2015

    The second edition of the independent event took place at the National Theatre in Havana on November 14th, 2015, where 17 speakers presenting a myriad of projects and inspiring experiences on environmental protection, health care, sustainable agriculture, architecture, arts and social development, uses of technologies and communication, addressed to more than 2200 attendants.

    Field of Dreams Festival

    On July 24, 2010, Levin and the Bruce High Quality Foundation produced and curated Celebrate Brooklyn! Presents Field of Dreams (Un Mundo Nuevo) in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, New York as a production of Music Has No Enemies. The festival showcased DIY artists and performing artists from around the world, including Luis Guzmán, Keziah Jones, Cucu Diamantes, Pablo Picasso, K-SISE, and Janka Nabay.

    Podemos Con Obama

    In 2008, Levin brought together many prominent Latin musicians to make a video inspired by his work on will.i.am's "Yes We Can" video in support of Democratic party presidential candidate Barack Obama. Celebrities such as Luis Guzman, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Jessica Alba, Paulina Rubio, Alejandro Sanz, John Leguizamo, Don Omar and many others participated. The video currently has more than 350,000 views on YouTube.

    The Price of Silence

    In 2008, Music Has No Enemies produced Amnesty International's "The Price of Silence", a commemoration of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Many international artists and activists such as Stephen Marley, Aterciopelados, Natalie Merchant, Yerba Buena and Hugh Masekala filmed a video of their collaborative song set in the UN.

    Content-OS

    Content-OS, founded by Levin, is a full service creative content company that brings high art to social impact. Founded as a strategic partner of Music Has No Enemies, Content-OS designs and manages projects at every scale that strengthens the core values of its partners through music and other forms of media. Paying close attention to the specific goals of clients, Content-OS is focused on producing and promoting superlative content that directly benefits the needs and mission of its partners.

    I'm Alive

    In a unique collaboration produced by Andres Levin, world-renowned musical artists Caetano Veloso and Lenine, Criolo, Emicida, Pretinho da Serrinha and Sistah Mo Respect along with many other celebrated Brazilian musicians and filmmakers spent three days in Rio de Janeiro's Floresta da Tijuca, part of Parque Nacional da Tijuca (that supported the project by offering its landscapes to film) creating "I'm Alive" a multimedia expression of our relationship to nature filmed, composed and recorded in the rainforest.

    Music Heals

    In 2012, Levin and the Content-OS team brought Music Heals to the Texas Children’s Hospital for a day of musical healing through collaborative songwriting and recording. Levin's team consisted of "Gustavo Galindo, blues/country singer Marsha Hancock, guitarist David Garza of Austin, composer/arranger Stephen Barber, drummer Brannen Temple of Austin and vocalist Suzanna Choffel." This was done in collaboration with Lopez Negrete and Purple Songs Can Fly.

    Farm to Turntable

    In August 2013, Levin and his team brought inner-city kids to McEnroe Organic Farm to learn about food production. A week later, they attended a freestyle workshop at El Museo del Barrio where they learned about turntablism and traditional farming music, and used what they experienced out in nature to write and record an original hip hop song about sustainable agricultural practices and healthy living.

    Contribution

    In 2012, MHNE and Content-OS in conjunction with Grammy in the Schools, led an inspiring workshop at Pace University for Grammy Career Day empowering NYC high school students through an impromptu songwriting workshop.

    Film

    In 2012, Levin produced his first film alongside Sarah Green, Amor Cronico. Directed by Jorge Perugorria, the film follows flamboyant Cuban-born / New York based singer-songwriter Cucu Diamantes on her tour around Cuba. The film interweaves footage of live music performances and a fictional love story narrative. An energetic display of Cucu's glamorous performance style with a fresh Latin pop soundtrack and a comical twist, Amor Cronico is a unique portrait of a Cuban artist traveling back to her roots.

    Advertising

    Levin has been involved in the music for advertising industry since 1995. In the fall of 2009 he launched Pirata (with Canadian partner Pirate) to provide sonic branding and audio post production for all aspects of broadcast audio, such as original music and licensing, sound design, full service radio production and 5.1 mixing. Since its creation, Pirata has provided work for Dr. Pepper, Verizon, Miller, Heineken, Cablevision, Kraft, Ritz, and Kohl's.

    References

    Andres Levin Wikipedia


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