Tag Archives: Spain

Artist Profiles: Diego Del Morao

Diego Del Morao

Diego Moreno Jiménez, better known as , was born September 20, 1978 in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain.

He grew up as a member of the renowned dynasty of the Morao. Diego is the eldest son of Moraito Chico and he trained at home under the watchful eye of his father, although he also received training at the Carbonero school.

He appeared on stage at 14, accompanying artists at different clubs and festivals. Soon his guitar attracted the attention of flamenco stars such as José Mercé. Enrique Morente, Diego el Cigala, la Niña Pastori, Miguel Poveda, Pansequito, Diego Carrasco, Montse Cortés, Marina Heredia, and others.

Discography:

Del Manzanares Al Guadalquivir, with Israel Paz El Moñi ‎(Alía Discos, 1999)
Orate (Warner Music Spain, 2010)
Vuelve El Flamenco, with Diego El Cigala (Cigala Music, 2014)
Antonio Reyes / Diego Del Morao – Directo En El Círculo Flamenco De Madrid ‎(El Flamenco Vive, 2016)

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Artist Profiles: Pedro El Granaino

Pedro El Granaino – Photo by Leo Sánchez

Gypsy singer Pedro Heredia Reyes, better known as Pedro El Granaino, was born in Granada, Spain in 1973. Singing was part of his life from the day he was born.

He has worked with great flamenco artists such as Los Farruco, Vicente Amigo, Tomatito and Enrique Morente, among others.

In 2012 he began his solo career. Since then, he has won praise for his singing and his deep knowledge of the flamenco tradition. Pedro El Granaino is considered one of the best singers of the current scene.

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Artist Profiles: Antonio Reyes Montoya

Antonio Reyes Montoya

Antonio Reyes Montoya was born in Chiclana de la Frontera, Spain in 1975. He grew up in a family with deep flamenco roots. His maternal grandfather is Antonio Montoya and his uncle Roque Montoya “Jarrito.” Antonio Reyes is also related to José Cortés Jiménez, “Pansequito”.

He appeared on stage for the first time when he was 7 years old, at the Fiesta de la Parpuja de Chiclana. In 1984, he performed at the bullring in Jerez, on Flamenco Thursdays, organized by the guitarist Manuel Morao. At 10, he won the first prize in Fuengirola, in the youth category.

In 1988, at the age of 13, he was a finalist in the Mairena del Alcor competition and traveled throughout the United States with the Gitanos de Jerez Company directed by Manuel Morao and later in Europe with the Misa Flamenca show.

In 2009 he recorded his first album “Viento del Sur”. In 2014, he won the “Giraldillo al cante” of the Flamenco Biennial of Seville, as the jury appreciated “for incorporating his personality into the legacy of the great masters” and in 2015 he recorded his second album with guitarist Diego del Morao.

Discography:

Viento del Sur (Bujio, 2009)
Antonio Reyes / Diego Del Morao – Directo en el Círculo Flamenco de Madrid ‎(El Flamenco Vive, 2016)

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Artist Profiles: Alonso Núñez Heredia ‘El Purili’

Alonso Núñez Heredia – “El Purili”

Alonso Núñez Heredia, better known as ‘El Purili’was born in La Línea de la Concepción, Spain in 2000. He stood out as a child for his talent as a singer and dancer, performing flamenco from an early age. For many fans, he is one of the rising talents of flamenco art.

He grew up in a household where everyone was a flamenco fan and attended three-day long celebrations. His great grandparents were flamenco performers.

El Purili’s greatest influence is Perico El Pañero. A friend told him to check out his music. El Purili got on Youtube and found one of Perico’s performances, singing tonás. Eventually El Purili met Perico at a flamenco peña (flamenco fan club).

Other musical influences include current artists José de la Tomasa, Cancanilla, Tío Manuel Moneo and some of the great voices of the past like Antonio Mairena, Manuel Torre, Juanito Mojama, Niña de los Peines, Curro and Manuel Mairena.

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Artist Profiles: David de Jacoba

David de Jacoba

David de Jacoba was born in Motril, Granada in 1985. He has a unique vocal style and exceptional ability as a singer. Since he arrived in Madrid in 2008, he began to sing along with great flamenco artist such as El Niño Josele, Joaquín Cortés and Tomatito.

David de Jacoba – Photo by David Mudarra

In 2010 he joined the group of Paco de Lucía, with whom he toured for three consecutive years.

At the end of 2014 he released his first album, Jubileo, that included well known artists such as Vicente Amigo, Pepe Habichuela and Josemi Carmona.

Discography:

Jubileo ‎(Nuba Records, 2014)

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Artist Profiles: Kiki Morente

Kiki Morente

José Enrique Morente Carbonell, better known as “Kiki Morente” was born in 1989 in Granada, Spain. He is the son of famed flamenco singer Enrique Morente.

Kiki is a singer, guitarist and composer. As a young boy, he used to sing next to his father and his sister, Estrella in respected venues worldwide. He follows on his fathers’ footsteps, understanding the roots of flamenco but recreating them through a modern perspective.

Kiki Morente – Albayzín

His debut album is titled Albayzín. It is dedicated to Albayzín, one of the most iconic neighborhoods of his hometown, Granada.

In 2019, Kiki Morente toured with David Carmona on guitar, Pedro Gabarre “Popo” on percussion and dancer Irene Rueda.

Discography:

Albayzín (Universal Music Spain, 2017)

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Artist Profiles: Amir-John Haddad

Amir-John Haddad

German-Spanish musician Amir-John Haddad, better known as El Amir, was born in 1975 in Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany. He moved to Spain in 1997.

El Amir is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, musical director, and producer. He‘s considered one of the best concert guitarists in today‘s Spanish scene, defined by his personality, maturity, sound and style.

El Amir has been playing flamenco guitar and the Arabic oud since he was seven years old, and has been performing on stage for 30 years. In addition to his extensive career, he has learned how to play traditional Mediterranean instruments including the Greek bouzouki and Turkish saz, being a virtuoso in all of them.

Amir-John Haddad

El Amir has collaborated with a long list of artists including Radio Tarifa, Chambao, Marcus Miller and Juno Reactor.

In 2010, Amir-John presented his show “From East to West,” combining all the instruments he plays, Arabic lute, Turkish saz, Greek bouzouki, flamenco guitar and the triple-necked electric guitar to expose a wide range of traditional music. A trip through several regions of the Mediterranean, through different instruments and original compositions mixed with modern and contemporary sounds, fired through effects processors.

Amir-John Haddad

Amir-John Haddad was part of a Madrid-based world music superband called Zoobazar. Group members included El Amir on oud and saz; La Musgaña’s fiddler, Diego Galaz on fiddle and mandolin; La Shica’s and Eliseo Parra’s drummer and percussionist, Pablo Martin Jones on drums and percussion; and the bassist of rock band GN3, Hector Tellini.

Zoobazar

Zoobazar’s debut album, Uno (2011), was a mesmerizing journey across the musics of the Mediterranean countries, including Iberian folk music, Turkish, Balkan, Greek, Middle Eastern and North African grooves and tunes combined with rock, funk and jazz.

Zoobazar’s second album, Dos, came out in 2014.

In 2017, Amir John Haddad played Vivaldi’s Concerto in C major for Mandolin for the first time on Greek bouzouki. The debut took place on the 6th of November at the National Auditorium of Music in Madrid accompanied by outstanding musicians from the Spanish National Orchestra.

José María Bandera and Amir John Haddad

Another project in 2017 was a collaboration with Paco de Lucia’s nephew, José María Bandera. The two guitarists performed material from Paco’s last album, Canción Andaluza, including María de la O, Señorita, I have to love you while you live, Chiquita Piconera, Romance of Valentía and Ojos Verdes, by Quintero, León and Quiroga and other great composers. The show also featured Josemi Garzón on double bass and Israel Katumba on percussion.

Amir John Haddad

El Amir was one the featured solo artists of the Hans Zimmer’s Tour performing flamenco guitar, electric guitar, Greek buzuki and ukulele. “The World of Hans Zimmer – A Symphonic Celebration” presents the composer’s works arranged for a live symphony orchestra. Zimmer spent months working on transforming his soundtracks into opulent concert suites. interpreting a very special selection of soundtracks from the most famous films such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Gladiator, Mission Impossible, The Holiday or Madagascar.

Discography:

Pasando Por Tabernas ‎(Double Moon Records, 2005)
Uno, with Zoobazar (Santa Fe / Ojo! Records, 2011)
9 Guitarras ‎(Zoomusic, 2013)
Dos, with Zoobazar (Galileo Music, 2014)

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Artist Profiles: María Toro

María Toro

Spanish musician María Toro was born in 1979 in La Coruña, Spain. She is a respected flutist and flamenco-jazz composer whose career path has taken her across many countries in different continents over the years. Seven years after moving from her native Galicia to Madrid, in 2009, she joined an international flamenco company in Zurich, Switzerland.

Afterwards, she crossed the Atlantic to form part of the flamenco and jazz movement in New York City. Later, she settled in Rio de Janeiro in order to integrate her music with the effervescent musical sounds of the city.

In Switzerland, she started to compose her first album, A Contraluz, finally recorded in the United States in 2014 with renowned jazz performers in New York City. In 2016, while living in Rio de Janeiro, she recorded her second album, Araras, accompanied by great performers such as Hermeto Pascoal, who provided Brazilian rhythm to her proposal.

In 2017, Maria Toro returned to Madrid, where she continues composing and performing her musical repertoire throughout Spain and Europe.

Discography:

Jose Romero Project (2012)
A Contraluz (Jazz Activist, 2014)
Araras (Jazz Activist, 2018)

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Artist Profiles: María Terremoto

María Terremoto

María Fernández Benítez, better known as María Terremoto, was born in Jerez de la Frontera in 2000. She is part of a famous family of flamenco artists; her grandfather was Fernando Fernández Monge “Terremoto de Jerez” and her father is singer Fernando Fernández Pantoja “Terremoto.”

Since she was a child, María Terremoto has participated in many flamenco zambombas (Flamenco Christmas carols performed during Christmas in Jeerz) with her family, in which she unexpectedly became the central character of each performance. At nine years old, Maria was responsible for a crucial moment in her father’s life, the great Fernando Terremoto, when she performed on stage in the flamenco nightclub (tablao) that bears his name. That day will be evoked forever by all who were there, because unsuspectingly, Fernando passed the artistic torch to his daughter Maria in what would be his final farewell to the stage.

In mid-2014, at just fourteen years old, Maria began to make infrequent performances in Jerez. Progressively, she began to perform more often and traveled outside of Jerez, making her mark in the jondo (flamenco deep roots) scene.

Her big opportunity came in February 2016, during the significant Festival de Jerez. María gave a flamenco performance at the Palacio de Villavicencio that left everyone astonished. That moment generated unparalleled press acclaim for such a young artist. She was just sixteen years old.

This performance was the beginning of a tour of flamenco clubs and major festivals, such as the peñas de Huelva, Torres Macarena de Sevilla, La Niña de los Peines de Arahal, Casabermeja de Málaga , Pozoblanco, Baeza…and festivals such as Grazalema, Pedrera, Casariche, Pruna, La Caracolá Lebrijana and the Flamenco Fridays of Jerez, among many others.

María Terremoto – Photo by Paco Barroso

On September 22, 2016, Maria performed a concert at Seville’s Flamenco biennial that many have called historic. After numerous positive reviews, she was the youngest artist to ever be awarded the high-status ‘Giraldillo Revelación 2016’ prize, which catapulted her to the vanguard of the flamenco scene. In 2018 she received the prestigious ‘Venencia Flamenca’, an award given by the Flamenco community ‘El pozo de las penas’. After receiving this recognition, María made the rounds on the most prestigious stages throughout Spain.

María Terremoto released her first album: “La huella de mi sentío” (IR Music, 2018). The album was officially debuted at La Bienal de Flamenco de Sevilla.

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Artist Profiles: Lela Soto


Lela Soto

Lela Soto Heredia was born in 1992 in Madrid. She is one of the young flamenco voices with more projection of the current flamenco scene, heir to the legacy of La Casa de Los Sordera. Her father is Vicente Soto ‘Sordera’, and her mother, Luisa Heredia, is a dancer.

In addition to her orthodox flamenco roots, Lela Soto imbues her music with a more avant-garde flamenco and in her voice you can also appreciate influences from jazz, blues, salsa or R & B. She has collaborated with artists such as Alejandro Sanz, Pitingo, Navajita Plateá or Diego del Morao.

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