One of the guitar heroes of fusion, Al di Meola was just 22-years-old at the time of his debut as a leader but already a veteran of Chick Corea's Return to Forever. The complex pieces (which include the three-part "Suite-Golden Dawn," an acoustic duet with Corea on "Short Tales of the Black Forest," and a brief Bach violin sonata show di Meola's range even at this early stage. With assistance from such top players as bassists Jaco Pastorius and Stanley Clarke, keyboardist Barry Miles, and drummers Lenny White and Steve Gadd, this was a very impressive beginning to di Meola's solo career.
Excellent addition to any rock music collection
4.5 stars really!!!!
Having recently shocked and awed the JR/F world with two amazing albums (Hymn To The seventh Galaxy and Romantic Warrior), Return To Forever was riding high on the wave it had created, riding on Corea and DiMeola's incredibly fast playing, displaying a monstrous but cold virtuosity that would eventually have a lot of fans grinding their teeth. ADM's debut solo album was another monster that would enthral fans around the world. This writer bought the album within the month it came out, well before he would indulge in Nucleus of Liles' start of the decade masterpieces, so for a few years, this album represented what jazz-rock was all about. Although called a solo album, you'd swear this could yet another RTF album as all of the RTF members appears at one point or another on this album. Musically speaking, this album is a bit schizophrenic, as 2/3 pf it is pure jazz rock, while the last third is more eclectic, from Classical too.
One of the guitar heroes of fusion, Al Di Meola was just 22 years old at the time of his debut as a leader but already a veteran of Chick Corea's Return to Forever. The complex pieces (which include the three-part "Suite-Golden Dawn," an acoustic duet with Corea on "Short Tales of the Black Forest" and a brief Bach violin sonata) show DiMeola's range even at this early stage. With assistance from such top players as bassists Jaco Pastorius and Stanley Clarke, keyboardist Barry Miles and drummers Lenny White and Steve Gadd, this was a very impressive beginning to DiMeola's solo career.
With a musical career spanning more than three decades, Al Di Meola continues to be one of the most influential and pioneering guitarists in the jazz-world-fusion category, mirroring the rich influences of flamenco, tango, Brazilian, African, and Middle Eastern music in his work. Recorded in 1993 at the North Sea Jazz Festival, an event widely acknowledged as the biggest and most prestigious festival in the world. Over the past 30 years, Al Di Meola has been recognized as a prolific composer, with over two dozen recordings to his name. The profundity of Di Meola s writing, along with the soulfulness and natural lyricism of his playing, have won him a large number of admirers worldwide.
Guitarist Al di Meola has been alternating electric and acoustic projects for the past few years. For this acoustic affair, he teams up with Dino Saluzzi on bandoneon to pay tribute to tango master Astor Piazzolla. The music (even a duet version of "Someday My Prince Will Come") has the flavor of Argentina and uses a wide variety of instrumentations, including an occasional string section and the voice of Hernan Romero. It's recommended to lovers of world music, the modern tango, and those who think of di Meola's guitar playing as being one-dimensional and purely based on speed.
The television presenter and comedian takes on an epic 8,000-mile journey halfway around the Arctic Circle deep in mid-winter, a spectacular but deadly time of year to see the unforgiving, ice-bound region. His odyssey is full of surprises as he witnesses natural wonders and discovers the magnetic lure of the far north.
Comparing early Al di Meola dates like Land of the Midnight Sun and Casino to his albums of the 1990s, it's clear how much his playing has softened. The exceptional World Sinfonia, an entirely acoustic CD, makes it clear that what hasn't changed is his unpredictable, spontaneous nature. Di Meola's right-hand man throughout this highly introspective date is the soulful bandonean player Dino Saluzzi, with whom he enjoys an undeniably strong rapport. A long-time lover of world music, di Meola incorporates South American, Spanish, and Middle Eastern elements, and makes Argentine tango a very high priority.