A high point of the Moroccan music festival is without doubt the Mawazine Festival in Rabat, Morocco. Al Di Meola’s fantastic appearance in 2009 also represented a summit of different cultures and religions – Al Di Meola (guitar), Peo Alfonsi (2nd guitar), Fausto Beccalossi (accordion), Gumbi Ortiz (percussion), Victor Miranda (bass), Peter Kaszas (drums), and with special guests from Morocco, Said Chraibi (oud), Abdellah Meri (violin) and Tarik Ben Ali (percussion). On his third trip to Morocco, the public gave this exceptional guitarist a rousing reception and showed ist openness towards Western music – and Al Di Meola wowed the audience with a special repertoire.
Al Di Meola (nee Al Dimeola) certainly has come along way from his native New Jersey to the stage of the Mawazine Festival in Rabat, Morocco, where this DVD was filmed on May 20, 2009. But there’s no need to question why. In modern jazz circles, Di Meola is among the most respected guitarists in the world, with lightening speed fingers playing in scale style.
One has been repeatedly hailed as the world's best guitarist, the other is Russia's most successful musician. And together, Al Di Meola and Leonid Agutin are simply unbeatable. For their DVD "Cosmopolitan Live", the two have created a unique sound, giving crossover a new dimension. Is this sophisticated pop for adults, then? Or popular world music? No matter, the sounds created by this fantastic duo will seduce every music-lover. Dreamily beautiful pop tunes meld with Russian jazz, Gypsy rhythms and Argentinian tango.
Al Laurence Di Meola is an American jazz, jazz fusion, and world music guitarist. Albums such as Friday Night in San Francisco have earned him both critical and commercial success with fans throughout the world.
For who hasn't heard of Andrea Parodi before, he was the lead singer of a folk-pop group (Tazenda) that had a brief moment of success in Italy in the early 90s. His unique voice and the folk themes sung in Sardinian make him more belonging to world music. In this album Al di meola rediscovers the european and mainly Spanish influences that are very evident on Friday Night in SF. The quality of the recording, taking into account that it's a live album, is excellent and remarkable.
Latin music has been a strong influence on Al Di Meola since his early years, and in the '90s, he paid especially close attention to the music of Argentina. A welcome addition to his already impressive catalog, Di Meola Plays Piazzolla pays homage to the late Argentine tango master Astor Piazzolla (whose distinctive and very poetic brand of romanticism was considered quite daring and radical in Argentina). It would have been easy for an artist to allow his own personality to become obscured when saluting Piazzolla's legacy, but the charismatic Di Meola is too great an improviser to let that happen. Though his reverence for Piazzolla comes through loud and clear on these haunting classics, there's no mistaking the fact that this is very much an Al Di Meola project.