Known for his work in both Cuban and Brazilian music, Michael Spiro is an internationally recognized percussionist, educator, recording artist and producer.
Michael is an eight-time Grammy nominee and has produced seminal recordings in the Latin music genre such as: “BataKetu,” “Bata-Mbira,” “The Latin Tinge,” and “Grupo Ilu-Aña.” His performing and recording credits include an array of international artists from David Byrne to Charlie Watts, including Latin music icons such as Eddie Palmieri as well as jazz luminaries Ella Fitzgerald and McCoy Tyner.
In 2011 Michael was appointed Associate Professor of Percussion at Indiana University, where he teaches Latin-American music in both the percussion and jazz departments. He has published several critically acclaimed instructional books and DVDs on percussion, and three years ago launched two groundbreaking educational websites, which offer complete instruction on Cuban and Brazilian percussion over the Internet: CongaMasterClass.com and SambaMasterClass.com.
Michael continues to be in demand as a guest artist at universities worldwide, and is a frequent presenter at Percussive Arts Society conventions. This includes directing in 2011 the Indiana University World Percussion Ensemble’s performance, which won that year’s World Ensemble.
In addition to his collegiate responsibilities, Michael remains an active performer and recording artist. He co-directs Conjunto Karabali with Santana percussionist and fellow LP artist Karl Perrazzo, and also is the co-leader of one of the only remaining charanga groups in the United States Orquesta La Moderna Tradicion.
Spiro holds the conga drum chair in the internationally acclaimed and two-time Grammy nominated Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet. He is also the leader of the Midwest’s newest and most dynamic Latin Jazz group Ritmos Unidos. In 2014 Patois Records released the band’s self-titled CD, which was produced by Michael, and has received widespread critical acclaim.
Michael has proudly endorsed LP instruments for over 20 years, and in 2011 he collaborated with LP to create the Hi-Hat Shekere (LP485).