El Javi Flamenco: Rockin’ San Miguel
By Viridiana Gutiérrez
El Javi is the name of both the band and the front man/guitarist. The sound can be described as flamenco fusion, but that doesn’t come close to encapsulating the duo’s range from smooth and sultry to rocking intensity.
If you’re a Led Zeppelin fan or a classic rock fan in general, you’ll be right at home as El Javi twists familiar songs into impressive fingerpicking masterpieces. They swing from hitting the hard-rocking breakdown back into flamenco-esque solos with what looks like ease but is an impossibly quick technique.
They borrow from rock hits of old, but what El Javi creates from that original framework makes something entirely new, all done in the aura of minimalism. Percussionist Jordi Marin uses only a snare drum, two cymbals, a couple sticks, and brushes while sitting on a cajon—clearly all the drum kit he needs—as with a subtle tap or stroke of a brush, he creates an impressive range of sound.
El Javi surprised the audience last Saturday at Bellas Artes during the “Under the Trees” concert organized by the International Chamber’s Music Festival during their Mexico tour to promote his latest EP, A Gypsy Journey Part I. The crowd was delighted and joined in as El Javi explored his no-lyric, all-guitar version of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.” A truly technical achievement; both lyrics and rhythm of the classic track were replicated with only strings. With his fast-fingered and technically impressive flamenco guitar style rocked the day.
El Javi is coming back to San Miguel to perform at the Blues Festival in Hotel Sautto on Friday, June 24, where he will perform accompanied by his bass player from L.A., Mario Garcia, and Jordi Marin in the drums. You can’t miss it. To learn more about El Javi, check out his website: www.eljavi.com.