Monday, July 20, 2015

Jazz in the City - The Music of Paco De Lucia at the San Francisco Jazz Center

SF Jazz - Programme by roland luistro, on FlickrA week ago, Mijo and I decided to get tickets to a jazz appreciation event held at the SF Jazz Center in the city's Hayes valley neighborhood. 

We learned at lot about Paco De Lucia and the art of flamenco through artists Jason McGuire trio and the members of Caminos Flamencos.

The show or jazz appreciation was scheduled to start at 7pm. First, Mijo and I didn't exactly know what is a Jazz Appreciation or what exactly goes on during that musical event. I learned about this event through the SFJazz Facebook posts and I thought, "Why not?".

Mijo and I do listen to classic jazz a lot and some modern jazz, as well. However, we've not seen or been to a jazz event at the SF Jazz Center. Though, Mijo and I have been meaning to visit the Center ever since it was built a couple of years ago.
SF Jazz - Glass Facade 

We got to the city's Hayes Valley neighborhood a little after 6pm. Since the show was scheduled to start at 7pm and we were hungry, we decided to just grab a quick snack because we didn't have enought time to eat a proper dinner. There is The Grove next door to the SFJazz Center. Mijo found a table at The Grove and ordered our snack while I walked next door to the Center to claim our tickets at the Will Call. Through the glass walls, I saw a group of musicians gathered inside the smallish hall.
SF Jazz - Worms eyeview

Mijo and I shared this tuna melt snack. It was delicious!
SF Jazz - Snack at The Grove 

We walked to the Center and showed the checker our tickets. I've never been to the Center so I am not familiar where is the main auditorium. We were supposed to go to the Joe Henderson Lab. We sat and we started hearing a lady talking about renowned flamenco artist Paco de Lucia. Afterward, a group started making their way to the stage. They were the Caminos Flamencos and the Jason McGuire trio. They started playing what seemed to me an original work. It was a combination of flamenco tunes with a jazz twist. I love the combination of flamenco guitar, drums and the bass. I also loved the box or cajon and its raw thuds.
  SF Jazz - Caminos Flamencos 

In between their performances, the musicians would talk about Paco De Lucia and how the late artist, and some other late artists, have influenced their music and the art of flamenco in general. I love how one of the artists, El Grillo, immortalized Paco De Lucia through his first hand experiences with the late artist.  The artists played another couple of their original pieces and one traditional flamenco. As their last piece, they combined a flamenco dance with a jazzy concoction of guitar, cajon, bass, and clapping. The sound and the dance were dizzying and took me back to my trips to Spain.
  SF Jazz - Wall SF Jazz - Cafe

In the end, Mijo and I truly enjoyed the evening and had a new appreciation of Flamenco.
SF Jazz - Building


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