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Sunday, Sep 11, 2005
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Posted on Thu, Sep. 08, 2005


MDC music teacher up for a Grammy

Sax great Ed Calle, a music professor at Miami Dade College, has been nominated for a Grammy Award.

Special to The Herald

Renowned artists such as Gloria Estefan, Frank Sinatra, The Bee Gees, Elton John, Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Juan Luis Guerra, Arturo Sandoval and Julio Iglesias feature Ed Calle's saxophone on their recordings.

But Calle is also a member of the faculty of Miami Dade College's North Campus, where he teaches music business and production.

Calle's latest CD, Ed Calle Plays Santana, has been nominated for Best Instrumental Album for the 2005 Latin Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Nov. 3.

''This nomination is special because the CD was inspired by the genius of Carlos Santana,'' Calle said.

Calle, a professor at MDC since 2001, said teaching keeps him in touch with new talent.

''The college's music business and production department strives to empower students to produce, promote, protect and profit from their creative efforts,'' he said.

Calle was born in Caracas. His family immigrated to America in 1968 and he grew up in the Miami area, learning English and studying music in Miami-Dade County public schools.

Public education was the catalyst for a prolific recording career that began when he was 15.

His first solo album, Nightgames, was produced in 1986. He later recorded Double Talk (1996), In the Zone (1998), Sunset Harbor (1999) and Twilight (2001). Ed Calle Plays Santana was completed in 2004. He also made three CDs with the Miami Saxophone Quartet.

Besided teaching at MDC, Calle also performs around the world with Arturo Sandoval and his own band.

''I'm not the musician who wears the artsy shirt,'' Calle said, when asked to describe himself. ``I'm pretty average, except when there's a saxophone in my face. Then, I become something else. When I'm eight or 12 bars into what I'm doing, the artist in me takes over. When I'm in that zone, you could slap me in the face and I wouldn't even realize it. I'm only thinking about the music.''

Second to his passion for music is a passion for mathematics. He is working on his doctorate degree at Nova Southeastern University, in Higher Education Leadership, with his dissertation focusing on math and music.

''I study jazz and harmony from a mathematical perspective,'' Calle said. ``There is a strong connection between music and math, as evidenced by the fact that many great figures in math history were also musicians. Pythagoras gave us geometry and the musical modes.''

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