Posts Tagged ‘Al Di Meola’

LIVE: Al Di Meola & Gonzalo Rubalcaba @ The Egg, 4/7/13

Monday, April 15th, 2013
Al Di Meola

Al Di Meola

Review by J Hunter
Photographs by Albert Brooks
A JazzApril story

There was only one real revelation to come from Al Di Meola and Gonzalo Rubalcaba’s duet show at The Egg: Until that night, Di Meola had never known why Greater Nippertown’s most recognizable concert venue was called “The Egg”! It’s not like Di Meola hadn’t played here before, but apparently the iconic guitarist had been asleep when the tour bus for World Sinfonia or Rite of Strings rolled up the North Arterial. Now that mystery had been cleared up, Di Meola and Rubalcaba got down to giving us exactly what we expected – sheer, unadulterated genius.

While this pair has never recorded as a unit, Rubalcaba guested on two Di Meola discs (2002’s Flesh on Flesh and 2011’s Pursuit of Radical Rhapsody), and Di Meola has been a fan of the Cuban keyboard wizard since he first heard Rubalcaba on a fusion date over 25 years ago. Maybe they haven’t logged a ton of playing time together, but you’d never know it by listening to their intricate interplay on the opener “Siberiana.” Rubalcaba worked a vamp as Di Meola’s fingers flew up the fret board at warp speed, finding a figure of their own to work as Rubalcaba seamlessly took the solo spot. If there were transitional points worked into the sheet music both players feverishly studied, those points were not discernable as the duo displayed an adamantine chemistry.

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LIVE: Al Di Meola’s World Sinfonia @ The Egg, 3/26/11

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011
Al Di Meola

Al Di Meola

Guitar great Al Di Meola led his globally oriented band World Sinfonia into The Egg in Albany on Friday, as part of the Pursuit of Radical Rhapsody tour showcasing selections from his brand new album of the same name.

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LIVE: Al Di Meola @ The Egg 1/30/10

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

Al Di Meola

Al Di Meola


Here’s a gift that keeps on giving: Jazz icon Al Di Meola, playing acoustic guitar in one of the best venues for jazz in the Capital Region.

Of course, when I say “acoustic guitar”, that doesn’t mean the music was completely “acoustic.” A vast array of foot pedals let Di Meola produce any sound he wanted, from synthesized accents to full-bore electric rock shocks. And when the pedal-pushing wasn’t enough, he pulled out his trademark rainbow-colored axe and served up the real thing, torching the Swyer with a hot medley of “Midnight Tango” and “One Night in June”, and then bringing the multi-colored guitar back for a sublime encore of “Strawberry Fields Forever.”

But Beatles covers and early-solo-catalog items weren’t what this night was about. The lion’s share of the two-set performance focused on Live from Seattle and Elsewhere, Di Meola’s latest disc with World Sinfonia. The music had a palette as colorful as Di Meola’s electric guitar, and it jumped about the Swyer as the multi-talented quintet displayed the kind of breathtaking instrumental choreography that only comes from longtime collaboration.

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