Paco de Lucía

Born Francisco Sánchez Gómez in Algeciras, Cádiz, Spain on December 21, 1947, Paco de Lucia was a virtuoso flamenco guitarist and composer who crossed over into many genres including classical and jazz. He became known for his blending of fluent fingerstyle playing and flamenco strumming, his musical style – which was referred to as ‘new flamenco’ – became influential to future generations of musicians. At the age of 5, his father began teaching him to play guitar and forced him to practice up to 12 hours per day. At the age of 14, he collaborated with his brother Pepe on the album Los Chaquitos de Algeciras (1961) before going out on tour with dancer José Grego as a member of his flamenco band. His mentors - Mario Escudero and Sabicas – then encouraged him to write his own material. After meeting guitarist Ricardo Modrego, the duo recorded a trio of albums together: Dos guitarras flamencas (1964), 12 canciones de Garcia Lorca para guitarra (1965), and 12 éxitos para 2 guitarras flamencas (1965). He then began to collaborate with guitarist Ramón de Algeciras on a series of albums in the late 1960s. Paco de Lucia released his first solo album, La fabulosa guitarra de Paco de Lucia, in 1967, which was followed by albums such as Fantasia flamenco de Paco de Lucia (1969), El mundo del flamenco (1971), and the critically acclaimed El duende flamenco de Paco de Lucia (1972). His 1973 album Fuente y caudal is now considered to be one of the best-selling and most influential flamenco albums of all-time. He continued to release successful solo albums while also collaborating with other artists including Chick Corea and Larry Coryell as well as recording albums with John McLaughlin and Al di Meola: Friday Night in San Francisco (1981), Passion, Grace, and Fire (1983), and The Guitar Trio (1996). He then formed the Paco de Lucia Sextet – which included his brothers Pepe and Ramón – and released a trio of albums with them. With many popular albums behind him, his 1987 album Siroco proved to be one of his most popular and has been called one of the greatest flamenco albums of all time. Further acclaimed albums followed including Zyryab (1990), Concierto de Aranjuez (1993), and Luzia (1998). His 2004 album Cositas Buenas, a collaboration with singer/songwriter Javier Limón, won the Latin Grammy Award for Best Flamenco Album and the Billboard Latin Music Award for Latin Jazz Album of the Year. While on holiday in Mexico, Paco de Lucia died of a heart attack on February 25, 2014. He was 66 years old.

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Stations Featuring Paco de Lucía

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