In 1985 I was hired to teach piano, improvisation and combos at the recently inaugurated Taller de Músicos de Madrid and in August of 1986 I moved to the Calle Mayor of the capital city of Spain. The musical activity in the Taller and in Madrid at that time was very intense. There was live music everywhere and I worked constantly in clubs, concerts, recordings, radio and television with musicians such as Perico Sambeat, Sean Levitt, David Thomas, Pedro Iturralde, Jorge Pardo, Donna Hightower, Michelle McCain, Chuck Israels, Abdu Salim and many more. In 1986 I arranged for the Taller to bring Barry Harris to do a week- long workshop and perform in Madrid and this turned into an annual tradition that lasted twenty years.
In the late 1980s I was one of the founders of a salsa band called Sonora Latina. We performed non-stop, accompanied artists like Andy Montañés and Roberto Blades, and recorded two LPs. For many years in Madrid in the eighties and nineties I was playing salsa with different bands five or six nights a week. As a result of studying repertoires and techniques for playing this music I decided to do more in- depth research and in 1995 I began interviewing a lot of important pianists from the Latin music world, some in Madrid and others in Barcelona, Córdoba, Paris, Havana, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and New York. Among them Bebo Valdés, Chucho Valdés, Frank Emilio Flynn, Rubén González, Eddie Palmieri, Papo Lucca, Larry Harlow, Alfredo Valdés, Jr., Tania María, Michel Camilo and Alfredo Rodríguez.
In the summer of 1999 I formed a quartet with the virtuoso harmonica player Antonio Serrano and Lucho Aguilar and Jimmy Castro on bass and drums. We did months of concerts which culminated in a live recording in the Café Central in Madrid: Antonio Serrano & Joshua Edelman Trío en el Central. This group got back together in 2008 and the friendship and musical collaboration continue to this day.
Going back to my roots. At the passing of my father, Harold Edelman (1923-1998) I prepared a program of music for a memorial ceremony that was held in Saint Mark’s Church in New York in February, 1999. I played with my son Gabriel on cello and my friend Lucho Aguilar on bass. A lot of the people present at this event encouraged me to record a CD in memory of Hal and a few months later I undertook this project in the company of musicians with whom I had a special connection from past years: Gabriel and Lucho, Manuel Machado, Perico Sambeat, Antonio Serrano, Norman Hogue, Jimmy Castro, Moisés Porro, Camilo Edwards, Beto Hernández and Luis Dulzaides.