Friday, January 30, 2009

First post ... Al di Meola

It occurred to me that it would be a terrible shame to forget all about Al di Meola at Jazz Alley. A blog would help ... so, that brings me to this first post. 

I caught the second set of Al di Meola and his World Symphonia band this evening---two percussionist, a bass player, a second guitar, and, the highlight, a playful accordionist. 

What struck me the most is di Meola's control of tempo. He weaves intricate melodies, heavy as treacle. Rises to a crescendo and, jolts the crows into applause with an exuberant flourish at the end. An Astor Piazzola tango (Cafe) was the high point for me. The tense back and forth with the accordion was superb ... but a fast paced, virtuoso finish broke the effect and took something away. Got the audience cheering though ... 

Don't miss Al di Meola if he's ever in your part of the world!

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