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Playing in the streets as a young boy, there were many Pacos and Pablos in Algeciras. Antonio introduced Paco to the guitar at a young age and was extremely strict in his upbringing from the age of 5, forcing him to practice up to 12 hours a day, every day, to ensure that he could find success as a professional musician. They urged him to start writing his own material, advice he took to heart. According to Gerhard Klingenstein, top jazz musicians who appeared at the festival i.

They recorded ten albums together and received considerable acclaim. Entre dos aguas, a rumba featuring bongos with an electric bass, means "Between two waters," referring to his home town of Algeciras, where the Mediterranean meets the Atlantic. His unconventional and modern approach to playing flamenco has already made him a big star in Europe, particularly in his native Spain.

This would be his last LP with a singer for at least 15 years. He began to show a very keen interest in jazz fusion and rock , and in performed with Carlos Santana in the Plaza de toros de las Arenas bullring in Barcelona. What I have tried to do is have a hand holding onto tradition and the other scratching, digging in other places, trying to find new things I can bring into flamenco.

The event was broadcast on national WDR television. In a interview with Down Beat magazine, Di Meola said that the reason for the breakdown was that their performances were designed to "drive the audience berserk" with a display of astonishing virtuosity and that they had run out of new spectacular fast runs to impress the audiences.

Siroco is often cited as his best album and one of the greatest flamenco albums of all time. I might add that Paco plays it with a great deal of feeling, far more than is normally heard.

And that goes for the orchestra that backs him up. In he toured the United States and Canada with Seville flamenco singer La Tana , [39] but subsequently greatly reduced his live performances in public. He retired from full touring, and would only give a few concerts a year, usually in Spain and Germany and at European festivals during the summer months.

In , he was awarded an honorary doctorate by Berklee College of Music in Boston , [73] and performed at the Montreux Festival.

He was also known for some years to select countries where he did not usually perform, and played at the Arena in Pula , Croatia in and , [74] [75] and in Turkey , Morocco and Tunisia in While playing soccer with his son on the beach, he asked his wife to take him to the hospital because he felt a "strange coolness in his throat. Soon after, he lost consciousness and died.

If you lack technique you lose the freedom to create. A master of contrast, he often juxtaposes picados with rasgueados and other techniques and often adds abstract chords and scale tones to his compositions with jazz influences. Bill Milkowski of Down Beat described him as "the portrait of studied concentration and pristine perfection: stiff backed and stern faced, with a distinguished air about him that some might misread as haughtiness.

He understood this instrument, which he saw as a permanent solution to the need for percussion in flamenco. Along with Rubem Dantas , he added its percussive elements and it became an essential tool of contemporary flamenco and later, other international musical trends.


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