Elegant Gypsy – Al Di Meola

The MARK’S VINTAGE VINYL page features something from Mark’s collection of recordings from over the years. Most of it is on vinyl – hence the name – though there will be a few entries from his CDs (remember those?).

Elegant Gypsy by Al Di Meola

  • Second album by jazz fusion artist Al Di Meola released in 1977.
  • Honestly, I’m not the biggest jazz music fan, and my record collection is serious short of jazz music. However…I somehow discovered Return to Forever’s Romantic Warrior album in the late 70s, and I was all-in, initially because of Chick Corea’s amazing keyboard work. As I listened more, I grew to be in awe of Stanley Clarke’s bass, and then Al Di Meola’s acoustic and electric guitars. And…Lenny White also is fabulous on drums and other percussion instruments.
  • Spending hours at the used record racks at my favorite used-records store, I stumbled upon albums released by Di Meola. I ended up buying his first four albums (through 2020, he released more than 40), including Elegant Gypsy. His work on the album earned him an award for Best Guitar Album from Guitar Play Magazine. The album became his biggest selling solo album, receiving a Gold certification.
  • Elegant Gypsy includes Di Meola’s signature “lightning-fast” guitar riffs, which were prevalent in his early work. It is a fusion of both jazz and rock, with touches of Latin, Mediterranean and flamenco music. Watch his live performance of Race With the Devil on Spanish Highway, the first track on Side-B of the album.

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