Diego el Cigala is making his much anticipated debut in the Bay Area as part of his first major North American tour. Noted as a pioneer for his unique approach to Latin American music forms such as the bolero, tango and Afro-Caribbean jazz, Cigala has deep roots in flamenco. As explained by Josh Kun in the New York Times, Cigala is able to “enter flamenco into conversations with other traditions without ever sacrificing its distinctive identity.” He won his first Latin GRAMMY for Bebo & Cigala: “Lagrimas Negras,” hailed by critic Ben Ratliff of The New York Times as Album of the Year and “one of the great new cross-pollinating documents of Latin music.” And then he went on to win another for a more flamenco-oriented CD “Picasso en Mis Ojos” which featured guests such as the legendary Paco de Lucia and Latin jazz master Jerry Gonzalez. Returning to the bolero, his 2008 project “Dos Lagrimas” united him with giants of Cuban percussion Tata Guines and Changuito and established his ongoing collaboration with the musicians who will be appearing with him at Zellerbach: guitarist Diego del Morao, pianist Jaime Calabuch Jumitus, percussionist Sabú Porrina and Cuban bassist Yelsy Heredia. Just nominated for yet another Latin Grammy, his latest album “Cigala & Tango” marries “Spanish flamenco with the equally gritty and powerful South American tango.” (The Observer, UK). “It works effortlessly,” says Felix Contreras of NPR.
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ZAHARA is a dynamic exploration into the links between Flamenco and Moroccan music and dance. A journey into the heart of ‘el Andalus’ that combines the passion and power of Flamenco with the richness of Moroccan traditions, Zahara is a unique collaboration featuring Gypsy Flamenco singer Kina Mendez, the Moroccan Musicians of El Hamideen and Artistic Director/Dancer Kerensa DeMars. Watch this clip from a recent performance.
See it at Cafe du Nord 8PM/Doors at 7PM. Friday October 21. Tickets can be prepurchased at cafedunord.com for $25. You can also RSVP with us at programming (at)sflatinofilmfestival.com for a discounted rate of $20. You can pay at the door.
THE SKIN I LIVE IN / La Piel Que Habito by Pedro Almodovar opens tomorrow (October 21) in San Francisco (Kabuki & Embarcadero). Familiar faces (including the talented and muy guapo Antonio Banderas) drama, and fixations as Almodovar fans can come to expect but with a storyline that’s thrilling and twisted. Check it out.