Al Dimeola

BB Kings, NYC

Al Dimeola the virtuoso jazz fusion guitarist extraordinaire, brought his Electric Tour 2016 to New York City. The show was billed as “Elegant Gypsy” meets “Romantic Warrior”. 

Al Dimeola was born on the other side of the River in NJ, where he studied the guitar before attending Berklee School of music in 1971. At the ripe age of 19 Al joined the band “Return to Forever”, along with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White. This lineup is arguably the greatest assemblage of musicians in the history of music. The album “Elegant Gypsy” was released during his tenure with the band. In 1976 Al released his first solo album “Land of the Midnight Sun” and “Elegant Gypsy” in 1977.  “Elegant Gypsy” and “Romantic Warrior” were both certified Gold. 

So on this night, blending these 2 classic albums together in one concert is pure genius, an epic night of golden masterpieces. The band was flawless, light and cheerful.  Al’s playing was blazingly fast, yet melodic. Each and every note was clear and effective and rang out in the theater beautifully. 
It was breathtaking to watch a man master a guitar like that. Whether he was playing fierce solos on the electric guitar, or beautiful melodies on the acoustic, it was awe inspiring and a lesser man may have cried.   

The band consisted of Philippe Saisse on Keyboards/Marimba, Gumbi Ortiz on Percussion, Elias Tona on Bass, Luis Alicea on Drums and Evan Garr on Violin. The band was right at home playing all the Jazz Fusion favorites, Latin melodies, World Rhythms and even mixed in some snippets of Carlos Santana and a rousing rendition of “Black Dog” by Led Zeppelin. 

As impossible as it may seem, Al has never looked better or sounded better. 
He has travelled the world many times performing all over the globe and I was blessed to bare witness of his breathtaking performance on this evening. Picking, blistering, percussion, jazz, rock, acoustic, electric, romantic, elegant, gypsy, these terms all describe the night perfectly. Al Dimeola the winner of many Greatest Guitar Player Awards, is deemed by many to be the best guitarist to ever live on the entire planet. Tonight he showed why, and the crowd reacted and agreed with standing ovations and encores. A perfect performance, a perfect night, a perfect musician. I asked Al after the show if he ever made mistakes and he said “Of Course”! Well I for one do not believe him. 

Please go see Al Dimeola in concert - you owe it to yourself.

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