Tag Archives: Josemi Carmona

Engaging Fusion of Jazz and Flamenco with Josemi Carmona at Barceló Torre de Madrid

Acclaimed flamenco guitar innovator Josemi Carmona is set to perform this evening, Friday, December 15, 2017 at Garra Bar in Barceló Torre de Madrid, a luxury designer hotel in Spain’s capital.

Josemi Carmona is one of the key figures in recent Spanish music. He was a member of iconic band Ketama and is part of one of the most traditional flamenco sagas, the Habichuelas. Josemi toured with his father, Pepe el Habichuela, as part of the Flamenco Puro show in the United States, along with other renowned flamenco artists.

Garra Bar is a place where art, music and urban style meet. It’s a location for music and cocktails in the heart of Madrid, by the Plaza de España.

Admission is free.
Barceló Torre de Madrid  
Plaza de los Cubos
Plaza de España, 18, 28008 Madrid, Spain


Flamenco innovators Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina to appear at Various Top Flamenco festivals in the USA

Josemi Carmona and Javier Colina

Guitarist Josemi Carmona and bassist Javier Colina will present their unique sound at the Flamenco Festival in New York on March 10 at Joe’s Pub: “We will play humbly but with the certainty that what we do is special and very enjoyable. Up close, it’s not a project of virtuosity but of emotion and emotion difficult to match,” explains guitarist Josemi Carmona.

On March 12th, the duo will land at the Miami Festival to show, in Colina’s words, this “jazzified flamenco that combines improvisations with touches of flamenco and African-American music“.

Finally, on March 14 Carmona and Colina will present their music at the XV Chicago Flamenco Festival, which collaborates for the first time with Flamenco Eñe.

Opening the range of flamenco artists is very difficult, festivals always present the same musicians. Flamenco Eñe has made younger generations express their talent to the programmers, giving strength to flamenco and energy to authors who are not so well known, “added Josemi.

The duo’s most recent recording is De Cerca (Universal Music Spain, 2016).


Top Flamenco Talent at Chicago Flamenco Festival 2017

Anabel Veloso – Photo by Oscar Romero (Bienal de Flamenco)

The Chicago Cervantes Institute celebrates, in collaboration with the SGAE Foundation, the Old Town School of Folk Music, the Flamenco Arts Center and the City Winery, will present the XV Chicago Flamenco Festival from February 24 to March 25.

During five weeks, this festival will bring together young flamenco artists as well as established stars of this genre in order to bring Spanish culture closer to Chicago.

In 2017 the lineup includes Anabel Veloso, Alfonso Aroca, Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, Alba Heredia and Isaac De Los Reyes, Amparo Heredia, Angel Ruiz, Las guitarras de España, Tamar Ilana, La Chimi.


Flamenco Eñe Heads to New York, Miami and Chicago in March 2017

left to right clockwise: Alfonso Aroca; Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina; and UHF at Flamenco Eñe 2016. Photo by Jesús Domínguez

The SGAE Foundation will continue with its Spanish Flamenco promotion overseas program, Flamenco Eñe, with presentations in New York City, Miami and Chicago during March 2017. The artists featured include flamenco fusion acts performed by Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, pianist Alfonso Aroca and the instrumental flamenco quartet Ultra High Flamenco (UHF). All of them participated in the first edition of Flamenco Eñe that took place in Malaga last May 2016.

The Flamenco Eñe Malaga showcase brought together several foreign performing arts presenters and promoters with a selection of musicians from Spain.

The Flamenco Eñe initiative has opened the doors of the international circuits to Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, Alfonso Aroca and Ultra High Flamenco (UHF), who will export their talent within the official program of Flamenco Festival 2017, held in New York and Miami between March 2 and 19, and the XV Chicago Flamenco Festival, organized by the Cervantes Institute, with the collaboration of the SGAE Foundation, until March 25.


Songhai Revisited at WOMAD 2016

Toumani Diabate, Juan Carmona, and Josemi Carmona
Toumani Diabate, Juan Carmona and Josemi Carmona


Songhai, the iconic 1988 collaboration between Malian kora master Toumani Diabate, double bass virtuoso Danny Thompson and the young Madrid flamenco group Ketama will be recreated at WOMAD 2016. This version features Toumani Diabate, Juan Carmona (Ketama), Josemi Carmona (Ketama) and Spanish flamenco jazz bassist Javier Colina & guests. The musicians will revisit the two Songhai albums, Songhai (Nuevos Medios/Hannibal Records) and Songhai 2 (Nuevos Medios/Hannibal Records).



The original Songhai project came about in 1997, when Ketama was touring the UK and met Toumani at a house party. They jammed and decided to record an album in Madrid. Songhai was produced by visionary Spanish producer Mario Pacheco (Nuevos Medios) and Joe Boyd (Hannibal records).




Songhai 2
Songhai 2

Suma Flamenca Festival 2016 Announces Second Week Schedule

Pedro el Granaino  - Photo by Leo Sánchez
Pedro el Granaino – Photo by Leo Sánchez

One of the most important events of the flamenco summit festival will take place during the second week of Suma Flamenca 2016. The festival, organized by the Madrid Regional government, will celebrate the Night of San Juan on June 24 with concerts in three spectacular gardens: Lazaro Galdiano Museum, Museum of Costumes and the Museo Casa de Lope de Vega in Madrid. the audiences will be able to enjoy performances in an itimate ssetting in these iconic locations.

Suma Flamenca 2016 includes workshops and music and dance lessons with the dancer Farruquito, at the Royal Theatre; saxophonist Jorge Pardo, guitarist El Entri, the cajoneros Lucky Losada and Piraña, at the Canal Dance Center. These activities are free to the public, prior registration online. In addition, there will be a conference on guitar given by José Manuel Gamboa in the Canal Theatre of Madrid.

‘La Noche Canalla’ (The Scoundrel Night) continues at Cafe Berlin with artists like Los Rubios and Jorge Pardo. In this series both locals and visitors can continue to enjoy “Flamenco Jam Sessions” one of the most innovative proposals for this edition.

Fiddler Paco Montalvo, singer Saúl Quirós, musicians Josemi Carmona and Javier Colina, Rancapino Chico and La Macanita Jesus Mendez, singer David Lagos and flutist Juan Parrilla complete the lineup for the second week of the festival.

The XI edition of Suma Flamenca festival started on June 15 and will end on July 3.

Farruquito, Master class
Monday, June 20, 17:00 h.
Teatro Real, rehearsal room (Madrid)
Free admission, pre-registration online

Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, Close Up
Thursday, June 23, 20:00.
Sala Berlanga (Madrid)
Price: 8 €

Pedro El Granaino, Earth
Friday, June 24, 22:30 h.
Costume Museum (Madrid)
Free admission until seats are full

Saúl Quirós, Flamenco concert
Friday, June 24, 22:00 h.
Casa Museo Lope de Vega (Madrid)
Free admission prior advance booking (limited 30 seats)

Rancapino Chico & The Macanita, Flamenco concert
Friday, June 24, 21:00 h.
Lazaro Galdiano Museum (Madrid)
Free admission until seats are full

Jesus Mendez, Flamenco concert
Friday, June 24, 20:00.
Sala Berlanga (Madrid)
Price: 8 €

Los Rubios, Familia “Los Rubios de Madrid”
Friday, June 24, 23:00 h.
Café Berlin (Madrid)
Price: 12 €

José Manuel Gamboa, guitar Conference
Saturday, June 25, 10:00.
Teatros del Canal, Canal Dance Center (Madrid)
Free admission, pre-registration online

Juan Parrilla, Presentation album Taxdirt
Saturday, June 25, 20:00.
Sala Berlanga (Madrid)
Price: 8 €

Jorge Pardo, Djinn Metaflamenco
Saturday, June 25, 23:00 h.
Café Berlin (Madrid)
Price: 12 €

Jorge Pardo, Master class
Saturday, June 25, 14:00.
Teatros del Canal, Canal Dance Center (Madrid)
Free admission, pre-registration online

The Entri, Master class
Saturday, June 25, 13:00.
Teatros del Canal, Canal Dance Center (Madrid)
Free admission, pre-registration online

Lucky Losada, Master class
Saturday, June 25, 12:00.
Teatros del Canal, Canal Dance Center (Madrid)
Free admission, pre-registration online

Piranha, Master class
Saturday, June 25, 11:00 am.
Teatros del Canal, Canal Dance Center (Madrid)
Free admission, pre-registration online

Paco Montalvo, Alma flamenco violin
Saturday, June 25, 20:00.
Real Coliseum Carlos III (San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Madrid)
Price: 11-16 €

David Lagos, flamenco concert
Sunday, June 26, 20:00.
Real Coliseum Carlos III (San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Madrid)
Price: 11-16 €


Songs of Exultation and sorrow through the Flamenco Prism

Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina – De Cerca (Universal Music Spain, 2016)

Flamenco meets jazz in this intimate collaboration between flamenco guitarist Josemi Carmona and jazz bassist Javier Colina. They are joined by Bandolero on percussion and palmas (Flamenco handclap percussion).

Ever since Carles Benavent adapted the bass to flamenco, Spain has produced a series of excellent bassists with a jazz background who adapt perfectly to flamenco. Javier Colina is one of these musicians. Former Ketama guitarist Josemi Carmona provides his own flamenco compositions, including alegrías, seductive tangos and a granaina.

In addition to flamenco and jazz, the musicians venture into the sounds of Latin America, incorporating versions of boleros and salsa songs. Wind instrument master and regular flamenco collaborator Jorge Pardo appears as guest on flute on “El incomprendido” (the misunderstood), a tribute to the late flamenco rumba star Antonio González, “El Pescaílla.”

Even though the majority of the album is instrumental, Spanish soul vocalist Amparo Velasco “La Negra” participates in the classic bittersweet bolero “Verdad amarga” written by Mexican songwriter Consuelo Velázquez.

Carmona and Colina define De Cerca as an album directed to the heart featuring music that tell stories of joy and heartbreak.

Josemi Carmona was born in Madrid in 1971 within a family of flamenco artists (his father is famed guitarist Pepe Habichuela). He was one of the founders of the groundbreaking flamenco fusion band Ketama. After playing with Ketama for twenty years he worked with artists as diverse as Paco de Lucía, Miguel Bosé, Alejandro Sanz and Rosario. Josemi recorded an earlier flamenco guitar-jazz bass duet album titled “Sumando“, with bassist Carles Benavent.

Javier Colina was born in Pamplona in 1960. He has performed jazz and flamenco and participated in the iconic album “Lágrimas negras” by Cuban pianist Bebo Valdés and flamenco vocalist Diego “El Cigala.”

De Cerca is an excellent collaboration by two of the finest musicians in the world of flamenco fusion.


Multiple Shades of Flamenco

Josemi Carmona - Las pequeñas cosas
Josemi Carmona – Las pequeñas cosas
Josemi Carmona

Las pequeñas cosas (Universal Music Spain, 2011)

Josemi Carmona is one of the leading figures in the world of flamenco fusion. He is respected by flamenco fans and urban hipsters as well. Most music fans will recognize him as one of the founders of legendary nuevo flamenco band Ketama and a well known producer of pop and flamenco recordings. Although this may seem surprising, Las pequeñas cosas is Josemi’s debut solo album. His reputation is such that he was able to bring together a stellar cast of musicians from various music disciplines such as jazz, flamenco, and rock.

As Josemi himself said after the release of the album, Las pequeñas cosas is not exactly a flamenco album. It contains deep flamenco roots, but you will also find jazz elements, pop, hip hop and more.

Las pequeñas cosas opens with a fabulous instrumental titled ‘Tangroove.’ As the title of the album indicates, this piece is based on a flamenco tango groove. It’s a mix of infectious rhythms and outstanding solo work by Josemi on the guitar and mandola. The lineup here includes Quiqui Ferrer on drums, Alain Perez on bass, Adrián Schinoff on piano and keyboards, Israel Suárez ‘Piraña’ on percussion, Bugge Wesseltoft plays a tasteful synth solo, Sandra Carrasco and Antonio Montoya on backing vocals, and the palmas (handclap percussion) beat machine comprised of Bandolero, Juanito and José Antonio Carmona.

The second cut, ‘Cuenta’ is a ballad with top-40 pop radio in mind. It features Manuel Carrasco on vocals with Josemi on guitars, Borja Barrueta on drums, Antonio Ramos “Maka” on bass, Alfonso Pérez on piano, electric guitar and keyboards, and Juanito Carmona and Luis Dulzaidez on percussion.

The title track ‘Las pequeñas cosas’ is a solo guitar piece, without any accompaniment. It’s a short mesmerizing introspective composition that segues into ‘Dos Puñales,’ a brilliant track that begins with a short vocal introduction by José Antonio Carmona that paves the way to memorable guitar by special guest Paco de Lucia who provides dazzling interplay with Josemi and pianist Alfonso Pérez. The rest of the band includes Juanito Carmona on cajón, Borja Barrueta on drums, Antonio Ramos “Maka” on electric bass, Martin Leiton on acoustic bass, Adrián Schinoff on keyboards, and palmas performed by Bandolero, Juanito and Josemi.

‘Mi Gorda’ is an exquisite laid back flamenco-jazz instrumental with Josemi on guitar, mandola and palmas; Alfonso Pérez on piano; Antonio Ramos “Maka” on electric bass; and Juanito Carmona on percussion. If you want to listen to great breezy guitar music as you drive down California’s Pacific Coast Highway, forget Ottmar Liebert and Jesse Cook. Josemi is the real deal.

Flamenco and Cuban musicians have had a mutual fascination for each other’s music for many years. ‘Ni contigo ni sin ti’ presents Alex Cuba on vocals. This is a tasty flamenco rumba demonstrating the strong ties between Cuba and Spain. The rest of the lineup here includes Josemi on mandola and guitar, Antonio Ramos “Maka” on electric bass, Juanito Carmona on percussion, palmas played by Bandolero, Juanito and Josemi.

‘Tosca’ is another short solo guitar delight by Josemi. It gives way to the beautiful ‘Pasando por Huelva’ where another high profile guest makes an appearance. It’s celebrated jazz bassist Dave Holland. This is not his first flamenco collaboration. Hollland blends perfectly with Josemi’s guitar, Borja Barrueta’s drums, and Alfonso Pérez’s piano.

For some reason hip hop gets inserted in many world music recordings for no apparent reason other than pandering to the hip hop fans. “De viaje’ features Malian rapper Oxmo, along with a string ensemble. Thankfully, the rapping is kept to a minimum. The band here includes Josemi on guitar, Antonio Ramos “Maka” on electric bass, Adrián Schinoff on keyboards, Borja Barrueta on drums, Luis Dulzaides on percussion, Bugge Wesseltoft plays keyboards and made the string arrangements featuring Julio César Fernández on violin, Chika Izumi on violin, Sergio Fernández Ruiz on viola and Eduardo del Rio Robles on cello.

‘Tres almas’ features Josemi and Carlitos Carmona on guitars and Juanito Carmona on percussion.

The unmistakable vocals of Uruguayan singer-songwriter Jorge Drexler join Josemi’s guitar on ‘Un par de dias antes de ti’, a delightful song accompanied by piano, bass and drums.

The album ends with ‘Gran Torino’, a captivating flamenco adaption of Kyle Eastwood’s composition.

Las pequeñas cosas is a first rate debut album by one of the essential musicians in the Spanish music scene.

Buy Las pequeñas cosas