Artist Profiles: Diego Carrasco

Diego Carrasco – Photo by Mario Pacheco

Diego Carrasco Fernández was born in Jerez de la Frontera (Cádiz) in 1954. He studied flamenco guitar in Jerez de la Frontera with master player Rafael del Aguila. During his first phase as a professional musician Carrasco accompanied on the guitar some of the biggest flamenco singers in his home town, such as Tía Anica la Periñaca, Tío Gregorio El Borrico, Fernando Terremoto, Sernita de Jerez, etc.

During that period, Carrasco’s artistic name was “Tate de Jerez.” He also accompanied some of the leading dancers like Alejandro Vega and Antonio Gades. His interest in other musical styles led him to collaborate with rock singer Miguel Ríos, creating a fusion of Flamenco and rock. After that there were other collaborations, with guitarist Manolo Sanlúcar and the most important Flamenco singer of the late 20th century, Camarón de la Isla.

In 1984 Diego Carrasco gave a radical turn to his profession as a musician. The guitarist known as El Tate disappeared and in his place appeared flamenco singer Diego Carrasco. His activity as a composer and producer has been endless. He composed music for the ballets of Joaquín Cortés and produced a series of very reputable recordings, such as the one by his regular accompanist, guitarist Manuel Morao, and also a series of recordings by some of the finest Flamenco singing families from Jerez. Carrasco has continued his collaboration with Manolo Sanlúcar and with many other artists, mainly younger ones- like Navajita Plateá, Tino di Geraldo and Tomasito.

Diego Carrasco can only create in state of trance and, paradoxically, his knowledge about studio recording and new technologies helps him reach that point where the art form appears seemingly spontaneous and easy. To do this he has had the complicity of the composer and producer Jesús Bola, as well as in previous cases where producer Ricardo Pachón made decisive contributions.

On Inquilino Del Mundo, Diego deepened his interest in the basic beat of Flamenco and continued searching for a primordial and unreachable lament within the perfumes of Andalusian song. As usual, Manuel Morao was on guitar and also his son Diego del Morao, las Peligro and La Venta on backing vocals, the handclapping dervishes from Jerez, Chicharo, Rafa and Bo Soto and, in an even more evident way than previous occasions, the notable rhythmic base present in most Nuevo Flamenco recordings: bass master Carles Benavent and percussion wiz Tino di Geraldo together with flutist Jorge Pardo.

Discography:

Cantes y sueños (RCA, 1984)
Tomaquetoma (RCA, 1987)
Voz de referencia (Nuevos Medios, 1993)
A tiempo (Nuevos Medios, 1994)
Inquilino del Mundo (Nuevos Medios, 2000)
Mi ADN flamenco (Nuevos Medios, 2004)
Hippytano (Rumor Records, 2012)
No marrecojo (Nuevos Medios, 2017)

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. 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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