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Al Di Meola

Al Di Meola's ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer, he has amassed over 20 albums as a leader while collaborating on a dozen or so others with the likes of the fusion supergroup Return to Forever (with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White), the celebrated acoustic Guitar Trio featuring fellow virtuosos John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia, and the Rite of Strings trio with bassist Clarke and violinist Jean-Luc Ponty. And while his dazzling technique on both acoustic and electric guitars has afforded him regal status among the hordes of fretboard fanatics who regularly flock to his concerts, the depth of Di Meola's writing along with the soulfulness and the inherent lyricism of his guitaristic expression have won him legions of fans worldwide beyond the guitar aficionado set. A pioneer of blending world music and jazz, going back to early Latin-tinged fusion outings like 1976's Land of the Midnight Sun, 1977's Elegant Gypsy and 1978's Casino, the guitar great continues to explore the rich influence of flamenco, tango, Middle Eastern, Brazilian and African music with his World Sinfonia, an ambitious pan-global group that he formed in 1991. Their exhilarating world music fusion has been documented on such releases as 2000’s The Grande Passion (featuring the Toronto Symphony Orchestra), 2007’s Live in London, 2011’s Pursuit of Radical Rhapsody and the stunning 2012 DVD, Morocco Fantasia (recorded at the Mawazine Festival in Rabat, Morocco and featuring special guests Said Chraibi on oud, Abdellah Meri on violin and Tari Ben Ali on percussion). Growing up in Bergenfield, NJ with the music of Elvis Presley, The Ventures and The Beatles, Di Meola naturally gravitated to guitar as a youngster and by his early teens was already an accomplished player. Attaining such impressive skills at such a young age didn't come easy for Al, but rather was the result of focused dedication and intensive periods of woodshedding between his junior and senior years in high school. “I used to practice the guitar eight to ten hours a day,” he told Down Beat. “And I was trying to find myself, or find the kind of music that suited where I was going with the guitar.” His earliest role models in jazz included guitarists Tal Farlow and Kenny Burrell.

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Live Review

Al Di Meola at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley

Read "Al Di Meola at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley" reviewed by Jack Gold-Molina


Al Di Meola Acoustic Trio Dimitriou's Jazz Alley Seattle, WA June 15, 2023 On Thursday June 15th Al Di Meola brought an acoustic trio to Dimitriou's Jazz Alley in Seattle to perform a set of flamenco influenced jazz. The musicians in his group included Di Meola playing guitar, Italian flamenco guitarist Peo Alfonsi, and percussionist Sergio Martínez. The set consisted of acoustic music that Di Meola has performed throughout his career as ...

3
Live Review

Al Di Meola at the Boulder Theater

Read "Al Di Meola at the Boulder Theater" reviewed by Geoff Anderson


Al Di Meola Boulder Theater Boulder, Colorado February 3, 2023 Psychologically speaking, having a split personality is usually a bad thing. Musically, it can be a delight. Guitarist Al Di Meola has had a musical split personality--one is acoustic, the other eclectric--for decades now. Two sides of the same coin, a sonic swap, aural diversity. And whichever side of the coin comes up, the audience is a winner. Di Meola blasted onto the ...

3
Album Review

Al Di Meola / Jean-Luc Ponty / Stanley Clarke: Rite Of Strings Live at Montreux 1994

Read "Rite Of Strings Live at Montreux 1994" reviewed by Doug Collette


By the time Al Di Meola, Jean-Luc Ponty and Stanley Clarke were recorded in 1994 at the prestigious Montreux Jazz Festival—remarkably, in their first time ever playing together in public—each had established a solid reputation in the jazz-fusion field and beyond. Accordingly, it might be seen as destiny that the three would work together in some context and indeed they did on both stage and studio (an album from which came out the year following their appearance in Switzerland).

Album Review

Stomu Yamash'ta: Seasons: The Island Albums (1972-1976)

Read "Seasons: The Island Albums (1972-1976)" reviewed by Maurizio Comandini


Stomu Yamash'ta è un celebre percussionista giapponese, nato a Kyoto, in Giappone nel 1947. Figlio del direttore della Filarmonica di Kyoto, ha studiato musica all'Università di Kyoto e al Berklee College of Music. Ancora giovanissimo venne notato dal grande direttore d'orchestra Seiji Ozawa e si mise in evidenza come performer di assoluto valore in contesti legati alla musica giapponese tradizionale e di avanguardia, incorporando suggestioni provenienti dalla musica elettronica. Nel 1969 si esibisce con la Chicago Symphony Orchestra diretta dal ...

13
Live Review

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal 2022

Read "Festival International de Jazz de Montréal 2022" reviewed by Mark Sullivan


Various Venues Festival International de Jazz de Montréal Montréal, Canada June 30-July 4, 2022 Like everything else, the Covid-19 pandemic stopped the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal in its tracks. Forced to cancel the 2020 festival, they instead presented a four-day virtual festival online on June 27-30. Another abbreviated version was presented September 15-19, 2021, featuring mostly Canadian musicians and outdoor stages to comply with health restrictions. This year the festival came roaring ...

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Radio & Podcasts

Charlie Mariano, Al Di Meola, Stanley Clarke, Return To Forever and Mahavishnu Orchestra

Read "Charlie Mariano, Al Di Meola, Stanley Clarke, Return To Forever and Mahavishnu Orchestra" reviewed by Len Davis


From 1977 we play music from Charlie Mariano, from 1985 Al Di Meola with Elegant Gypsy-Live and More. Return To Forever, Stanley Clarke and the Mahavishnu Orchestra.Playlist Gene Lake “Grace Under Pressure" from Cycles (Passin' Thru) 00:00 Charlie Mariano “Helen 12 Trees" from Helen 12 Trees (Edel) 07:14 Al Di Meola “Senor Mouse" from Elegant Gypsy-Live And More (Ear Music) 14:17 Stanley Clarke and Friends “Stratus" from Live At the Greek (Sony) 21:31 Return to Forever “Celebration Suite ...

1
Radio & Podcasts

Al Di Meola, Richie Cole, Oscar Peterson and More

Read "Al Di Meola, Richie Cole, Oscar Peterson and More" reviewed by Joe Dimino


This week we feature guitarist Al Di Meola with music off his 2020 Tribute to The Beatles, Across the Universe. We pay deep respects to the late Richie Cole and honor the spirit of Bootsie Barnes. We continue bringing you jazz in all its current and progressive forms to cope with this COVID-19 world. Playlist Al Di Meola “Here Comes the Sun" Across the Universe (earMUSIC) 00:00 Host talks 3:40 River Cow Orchestra “Word Is'" First Bliss (Fieldinfoserv ...

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Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Source: Michael Ricci

All About Jazz is celebrating Al Di Meola's birthday today!

Al Di Meola's ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer, he has amassed over 20 albums as a leader ...

Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Source: Michael Ricci

All About Jazz is celebrating Al Di Meola's birthday today!

Al Di Meola's ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer, he has amassed over 20 albums as a leader ...

1

Interview

Interview: Al Di Meola on 'Saturday Night in SF'

Interview: Al Di Meola on 'Saturday Night in SF'

Source: JazzWax by Marc Myers

As legendary jazz albums go, Friday Night in San Francisco is a cult classic. Recorded live at San Francisco's Warfield Theatre on December 5, 1980, the album was released in 1981 and featured three superb guitarists—Al Di Meola, John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucía. All three played acoustic models. In some respects, the album's popularity at the time demonstrated that jazz fusion had run its course and that fans had aged and were ready for a change. The album also ...

Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Source: Michael Ricci

All About Jazz is celebrating Al Di Meola's birthday today!

Al Di Meola's ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer, he has amassed over 20 albums as a leader ...

12

Award / Grant

Roman Miroshnichenko And Al Di Meola Are Finalists In The 25th Annual USA Songwriting Competition

Roman Miroshnichenko And Al Di Meola Are Finalists In The 25th Annual USA Songwriting Competition

Source: All About Jazz

Guitarist, composer and bandleader Roman Miroshnichenko is a Finalist in the 25th Annual USA Songwriting Competition in the “Instrumental" category for his composition “Aliens’ Electrik Dream", which appears on his latest multi Award-winning album Ascension. “Alien's Electrik Dream" is dedicated to one of the greatest guitar players of all time Steve Vai, who very kindly responded on the composition: “Congratulations on your record! And thanks so much for the touching ;Alien’s Dream.' It’s quite beautiful! I like music that ...

Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Source: Michael Ricci

All About Jazz is celebrating Al Di Meola's birthday today!

Al Di Meola's ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer, he has amassed over 20 albums as a leader ...

Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Source: Michael Ricci

All About Jazz is celebrating Al Di Meola's birthday today!

Al Di Meola\'s ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer... Read more.

Place our Musician of the Day widget ...

5

Award / Grant

Al Di Meola Receives Honorary Doctorate At Berklee's Campus In Valencia, Spain

Al Di Meola Receives Honorary Doctorate At Berklee's Campus In Valencia, Spain

Source: Margot Edwards

Berklee Provost Larry Simpson presented an honorary doctor of music degree on July 9 to legendary jazz, fusion, and world music guitarist, composer, bandleader, and producer Al Di Meola during the commencement ceremony for the master’s degree programs at Berklee’s campus in Valencia, Spain. Di Meola also performed as a special guest at the commencement concert at the City of Arts and Sciences, which drew thousands of attendees. Over a career that has spanned more than four decades, Di Meola ...

Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Jazz Musician of the Day: Al Di Meola

Source: Michael Ricci

All About Jazz is celebrating Al Di Meola's birthday today!

Al Di Meola\'s ongoing fascination with complex rhythmic syncopation combined with provocative lyrical melodies and sophisticated harmony has been at the heart of his music throughout a celebrated career that has spanned four decades and earned him critical accolades, three gold albums and more than six million in record sales worldwide. A bona fide guitar hero, perennial poll-winner, and prolific composer... Read more.

Place our Musician of the Day widget ...

5

Recording

John McLaughlin, Al Di Meola & Paco De Lucia "Passion Grace & Fire" Reissued On 180g Virgin Vinyl by Audio Fidelity

John McLaughlin, Al Di Meola & Paco De Lucia "Passion Grace & Fire" Reissued On 180g Virgin Vinyl by Audio Fidelity

Source: All About Jazz

In 1983 the guitar super trio of John McLaughlin, Al Di Meola and Paco de Lucía reunited for another set of acoustic guitar trios. Unlike their first album the phenomenal live acoustic performance Friday Night In San Francisco this masterpiece consists entirely of studio sessions. Passion Grace & Fire is a mix of flamenco, fusion, jazz, latin and classical music, bathed with beauty and compassion. It is simply three mindblowing musicians that united to produce the last word in acoustic ...

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