It was during this same period that Luis started to think more and more about the possibility of pursuing a life in music. The more he began to listen and to read about jazz—his tastes had expanded to include players like Cecil Taylor and John Coltrane—the more he became aware of one undeniable truth. All his favorite artists lived and/or recorded in New York City. Thus, it was only a matter of time before he too would make that move.
A full scholarship to the prestigious Manhattan School of Music was the catalyst. And it was at MSM where he began his formal study in both classical and jazz piano with Harold Danko and Martha Pestalozzi respectively. After receiving his BA in Jazz Performance in 1997, Luis pursued his Masters at Queens College with the legendary Sir Roland Hanna. This was perhaps one of the most pivotal moments in his development as an artist. “While studying with Sir Roland Hanna I came to realize just how little I knew about both the piano and the music. He forced me to start with a clean slate and to re-evaluate my musical perceptions—both about jazz and the history of jazz piano. I began to look at jazz and classical music in a new and more in-depth way and my playing evolved accordingly.”
Luis’ music “education,” was not limited to the classroom. Soon after moving to New York, he quickly established himself as an in-demand pianist amassing quite an impressive resume. Some of the artists Luis has collaborated and/or performed with include Ravi Coltrane, John Patitucci, Ray Barretto, Brian Lynch, David Sanchez, Ben Wolfe, Butch Morris, Steve Turre, Mark Shim, Jane Bunnett, Marcus and E.J Strickland, Ralph Irizarry and Timbalaye, Jerry Gonzalez and the Fort Apache Band, Tia Fuller, and Yosvany Terry. A list that is as notable both by its quality as well as its diversity. As a member of groups led by, Miguel Zenón, Ray Barretto and Ravi Coltrane, Luis has made his mark as a performer, a composer and arranger. He can be heard most recently on Ravi Coltrane’s “Blending Times” and Miguel Zenón’s 2012 Grammy nominated “ Alma Adentro: The Puerto Rican Songbook”
In 2005, Perdomo released his first CD as a leader, “Focus Point”, for RKM Records. Focus Point includes music that Luis wrote in college as well as more recent compositions. “I wanted to document my musical journey up to the present, but at the same time create arrangements that would give the music a certain continuity.” Luis often writes with particular musicians in mind and on this recording, he was able to bring together some of his favorite musical collaborators including Miguel Zenón, Ravi Coltrane, Ugonna Okegwo, Ralph Peterson Jr. and Roberto Quintero. Focus Point brings to the forefront Luis’ prodigious talents both as an innovative composer/arranger and a creative and original improviser. The CD received rave reviews in all the major jazz publications and appeared on many top ten lists of 2005.
Since 2005, Perdomo has released two critically acclaimed recordings as a leader “Awareness” in 2007 and “Pathways” in 2008. Each disc represents very distinct and contrasting aspects of his musical identity. “Awareness”, which features his working trio—Hans Glawischnig (bass) and Eric McPherson (drums) as well as special guests, bassist Henry Grimes and drummer Nasheet Waits-- is the more overtly “experimental” of the two. And the critics took notice immediately. The Village Voice praised him for his efforts calling him ”A rather amazing improviser, the pianist is making a name for himself by feverishly assaulting the progressive edge of mainstream” This, however, doesn’t mean he can not play or does not have reverence for the mainstream and the jazz tradition. “Pathways” makes it very clear that Perdomo is equally at ease in both worlds. His latest CD “Universal Mind”, on the RKM Music label (Street Date Feb 14th, 2012) is a very special one for Luis: It features his long time band mate in Ravi Coltrane’s Quartet, bassist Drew Gress, with whom he has built a strong rapport over the years, and one of most influential musicians in the history of Jazz, and also one of Luis’ early influences: drummer Jack Dejohnette. Produced by Ravi Coltrane, “Universal Mind” is a record that incorporates elements that influenced Luis as an early age and steered him towards a career in music: fearless explorations, combined with passionate and adventurous playing.