In 1977, Amram's band, featuring Ray Mantilla, joined Dizzy Gillespie, Earl Hines and Stan Getz’s bands for an historic concert in Havana -- the first US/Cuba musical exchange since the revolution. Amram composed "In Memory of Chano Pozo" for the occasion, and was joined onstage by Los Papines, Paquito d'Rivera and Arturo Sandoval. Amram later created a symphonic version of the piece which he has performed for 34 years with orchestras around the world. In 2012, Amram will be conducting his latest composition, “Symphonic Variations on a Song By Woody Guthrie,” with symphony orchestras across America during the year-long Woody Centennial Celebrations, including a live recording of the symphony with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra on September 22nd.
Today, as he has been doing for over 50 years, Amram continues to compose music while traveling the world as a conductor, soloist, bandleader, visiting scholar and narrator in five languages. He is the author of three books: Vibrations; Offbeat: Collaborating with Kerouac; and Upbeat: Nine Lives of a Musical Cat; with his forth book, David Amram: the First 80 Years, to be release in 2013.
Lawrence Kraman’s feature film documentary David Amram: The First 80 Years will be released in 2013. Meanwhile, Andrew Zuckerman’s book and new feature film documentary Wisdom: The Greatest Gift One Generation Can Give To Another includes David Amram as one of the World’s 50 Elder Thinkers and Doers.