Vicente Amigo, the sultan of "duende"
Vicente Amigo appears to be enveloped by a charismatic and ethereal air, his gaze seemingly lost in the distance. His guitar constantly stimulates our imagination. This is music to dance to with the spirit... it is so powerful, it is lifted off the sheet music and propelled into space. It is exciting for the connoisseur, but also accesible to everyone. To his masterful and magical use of music we must add his personal charisma, which makes him irresistible on stage. He is a true sultan from Córdoba, and he is ready to conquer the world.
Vicente Amigo is from Córdoba through and through. When he was eight years old, Father Christmas brought him his first guitar. Other, more tangible people, introduced him to the truth and the roots of flamenco: Juan Muñoz (El Tomate) and Merengue de Córdoba. He spent the next few years playing with Manolo Sanlúcar and his brother Isidro, who helped him discover new, uncharted territories. Later, he formed a duo with the flamenco singer (or cantaor) El Pele - together they released an album, "Poeta de esquinas blandas", which in many ways opened up new formal avenues in contemporary flamenco. He worked with the legendary Camarón de La Isla on the album "Soy Gitano". Towards the end of the eighties, he received the most prestigious awards which the world of flamenco concedes to concert guitarists; at this point in his career, he had finally found his own artistic and creative space. In 1991 he shared the stage with Paco de Lucía during the international guitar festival "Leyendas de la Guitarra" in Seville - Bob Dylan, Keith Richards, Phil Manzanera, Joe Cocker, Jack Bruce and Richard Thompson also took part. That same year he also recorded his first solo album, "De mi corazón al aire", which received two big awards from the media. Soon after that, he performed the "Concierto flamenco para un marinero en tierra", dedicated to the poet Rafael Alberti and orchestrated by the great composer Leo Brower. In "Martinica 92" he shared the stage with Stanley Jordan, and this international collaboration lead him to work with artists such as Milton Nascimento, Wagner Tiso, Al Di Meola, Joáo Bosco and John McLaughlin. In 1995 he released "Vivencias imaginadas", his second album, which included a refined joint effort with Paco de Lucía, as a homage to Pat Metheny. Two years later, his album "Poeta" received the flamenco awards given by the "Premios de la Música", the Spanish Grammys. His career was unstoppable.
"CIUDAD DE LAS IDEAS"
"Ciudad de las ideas" , "City of ideas", is an album which gives us an insight into Vicente Amigo's personality.
This album, in which we can sense the loneliness of the creative process, captures Vicente's search for spontaneity - he doesn't want his listeners to guess the intricate musical processes behind his sound; instead, he renders his musical web invisible and invites us to immerse ourselves in pure feeling.
His music is truly for everyone, grandparents and grandchildren, flamenco specialists and newcomers to the genre. It is inebriated with melody and rhythm and seems to flow with the forces of nature. Vicente invites us to enter his City of Ideas, where there are "three notes to say I love you", where "the afternoon is like candy", and where "the eyes of the Alhambra never cease to watch..." where Manuel, the gypsy, sits down to enjoy a love song, a bolero; and where children sing out words like tatá, which some day we might understand the meaning of. Here we find pure genres such as the soleá and the copla melting in an embrace... here the doors will always be open to everything, be it conventional or revolutionary... the doors will always be open so we can go in and out of this "City of Ideas".
In this new album, "Ciudad de las ideas", we can hear the vocals of Khaled, Pedro Aznar, Dieguito "El cigala", Montse Cortés and Vicente himself. We can also find musicians of the stature of Mino Cinelu on drums or Alfredo Paixao on bass; it is orchestrated and conducted by Joan Albert Amargós. Other musicians in this production include Tino di Geraldo, Chaboli and Echegaray Street on percussion. The album was recorded in Filigrana studios, in Córdoba, and was mixed in Madrid, in Eurosonic studios, and produced by Vicente Amigo. It was mastered by Todd Gerard, in the Gerard Sound Lab, in New York.
"3 notas para decir te quiero" ("3 notes to say I love you") is the album's first single, and it overflows with Vicente Amigo's artistry and magic.
Today, Vicente Amigo carries the torch of the great Spanish guitar tradition.