Having built an international reputation via his work with Rubalcaba, Hernandez defected to Italy in hopes of transitioning from there to New York. He spent three years there, teaching in a conservatory and performing regularly in Rome's busy club scene. When the opportunity arose to relocate to NY, he was offered a gig with Latin jazz piano master Michel Camilo. Through his work with Camilo, Dave Valentin and the TropiJazz All-Stars, Hernandez played on the most influential Latin jazz recording of the '90s.
He was introduced to mainstream audience in 1997 having performed with Carlos Santana's multy-grammy award winning hit album "Supernatural". Henandez earned his first Grammy with Roy Hargrove's Crisol recording "Havana", and the second with Michel Camilo's "Live at the Blue Note", which took Best Latin Album in 2003. The Grammy winner Alejandro Sanz's "No es lo mismo" and Eddie Palmieri's "Listen Here!" both featured Horacio "El Negro" in their line up.
Horacio has penned the industry standard method book "Conversation in Clave" published through Alfred Music, and released the timeless DVD Concert "Live At The Modern Drum Festival", featuring John Patitucci, Michael Brecker, Hilario Duran, amd Marc Quinoses, available through Hudson Music. His indipendent releas with Giovanni Hidalgo entitled "Traveling Trough Time", continues to remain a favorite of the percussion community worldwide.
El Negro's debut as a bandleader came in 2003 with the release of "El Negro & Robby at the Third World War" with the drummer Robby Ameen, follow by the self-titled CD "Italuba", resulting in countless gigs and nine European tours over the last three years.
photo: Andrea Boccalini