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Flamenco Passion & Soul

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Album Review

Flamenco guitarist Gino D'Auri taps into the deeper undercurrents of flamenco, what they call "duende," on this fiery follow-up to his album Flamenco Mystico. Improvisation has always been a part of the flamenco tradition, and D'Auri extends this by inviting cellist David Darling to play on this album. On five tracks, the cello takes the place of the singer, while on others, the cello adds bass drones, rhythms, or dramatic countermelodies. Darling often took the music to more romantic territories, more caressing than sizzling, more tender fingertips than pounding heels. D'Auri burns through the guitar work, but his playing is not reckless. He offers a sense of the other musicians, the space of the room, and the acoustic depths of his guitar. Palmas by Antionoi De Jerez added the perfect accompaniment, and I could swear I heard dancers' heels and the swish of long dresses. The percussive tango "Cadiz y Badajoz" swirls at breakneck, heart-pounding speed. The liner notes will help your appreciation of this music. Its gypsy origins are well-known, but much of the music was derived from the synagogual chants of the Sephardic Jews. The languid "Paternera" is one such piece; Darling provides a bowed drone, while the guitar embellishes a chant above it. Suddenly, the music snaps to a strong and sultry dance cadence. The original song tells the legend of a beautiful singer named La Paternera: very exotic and a troublemaker. "Paternera" is supposedly bad luck. Take your chances?


Genre: World

Years Active: '80s, '90s

Guitarist Gino D'Auri was born in Rome, the grandson of a gypsy. He began studying classical guitar, but while in his teens, D'Auri was "traumatized by flamenco" when he saw the movie Sombrero with Jose Greco, the legendary flamenco dancer, and Geronimo Villarino, one of the all-time great flamenco guitarists. D'Auri began playing flamenco music and investigating the rich cultures that fed the tradition. In 1967, D'Auri moved to the Los Angeles area, where he played in the flamenco clubs. In 1976,...
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Flamenco Passion & Soul, Gino D'Auri
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