Artist Profiles: Ciro Hurtado

Ciro Hurtado

Ciro Hurtado is a guitarist-composer from Peru who has been actively performing since the early 1970s. His early musical career started during his high school years in Lima, performing in music festivals, theater recitals, weddings, birthdays and even funerals. At this time, Lima was experiencing a revival of traditional music, while the radio air waves were saturated with rock music. These two forces are the major influences in his musical style.

He arrived to the USA in 1975 where he studied guitar with private teachers and at the Guitar Institute of Technology. Later he joined Strunz & Farah for a few years performing at the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, Vancouver Folk Festival in Canada, Havana Classical Guitar Festival in Cuba, Kennedy Center and a tour of Peru. His participation with them was documented in the audiophile album Misterio for the label Water Lily Acoustics.

Ciro is one of the founding members and currently the musical director of the group Huayucaltia. He has toured extensively in the United States and Peru with them, sharing the stage with artists such as Jackson Browne, Sting, Holly Near and Carlos Vives. He has recorded and co-produced six albums with Huayucaltia: Despertar, Caminos, Horizontes, Amazonas, Or?genes and Destinos.

As a solo artist he has produced and recorded five albums where he leads a Latin jazz band comprised of top Los Angeles musicians featuring notable players such as Justo Almario and Pedro Eustache, among many others. His solo effort includes In My Mind, Tales From Home, on Rom Records, The Magic Hour (collaborative effort with his wife Cindy Harding), Guitarra, under his own label, and Echoes of the Andes on the Canadian label Metacom. In addition, he has produced and recorded albums for LA Law’s Michele Greene, Conjunto Jard?n, and many other talented artists. Most recently he was awarded the prestigious 2001/2002 Durfee Master Musician Fellowship.

Ciro has scored and participated musically in various feature films and documentaries such as Baraka, Dead Women in Lingerie, Max is Missing, Hope Street, Monsters and at the request of Ry Cooder did a short appearance in Walter Hill’s Extreme Prejudice.

Ciro’s guitar work ranges from the very traditional Latin American genres to the more sophisticated fusion Latin-Jazz idioms. His fine command of the instrument borrows from the classical techniques as well as alternate plectrum picking for high intensity solos. Pieces written by Ciro evoke motifs, landscapes and exciting elements of South American styles and rhythms, placing him among a select generation of Latin American composers.


In My Mind (Rom Records, 1989)
The Magic Hour (Rom Records, 1991)
Tales From Home (Rom Records, 1993)
Guitarra (Hurtado, 1995)
Echoes Of The Andes (CMC Home Entertainment, 1996)
Los Angeles Blues (Inti Productions, 2012)
Ayahuasca Dreams
Selva (2016)

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several TV specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.


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