Eduardo Niebla at the Palm House

Eduardo Niebla’s career as an acclaimed flamenco-jazz guitar virtuoso spans four decades.  Born in Tangiers to Andalusian parents in 1955, he has been resident in the UK since 1978. Last night I attended a spellbinding performance by the Eduardo Niebla Trio, with Carl Herring on accompanying guitar and Dharmesh Parmar on tabla.

This was a stunning display of virtuosity by all three musicians.  Niebla has a terrific emotional range, from delicately fingered interludes to passionate rock stylings and wild and emotional flamenco passages in which he thumps and scrapes the guitar to evoke the stamping of a flamenco dancer.  And, as he rightly said at the close, he has tremendous accompanists. Dharmesh Parmar on Indian tabla is truly a virtuoso percussionist and Carl Herring is an excellent guitar player in his own right.

Eduardo was born in Tangiers in 1955.  His parents were Andalusian and after the family’s move to Catalonia, Eduardo began a musical career that has stretched from the 1970s, when he founded a popular ‘symphonic rock’ band, to the present, taking in collaborations with a huge range of acclaimed musicians.  In 1983 he formed the acclaimed Eduardo Niebla Guitar Duo with Antonio Forcione, which has been repeatedly named as the best guitar duo on the European circuit. A few years ago I came across Mediterraneo, the album he recorded in 1995 with the Palestinian oud player Adel Salameh, described as an ‘astonishing interplay between the principals who wed technical fluidity and virtuosity to an unashamed passion’.

In this YouTube clip, the Eduardo Niebla Trio performs on the Culture Show on BBC 2.  Here, Niebla is accompanied by Carl Herring (guitar) and Bhupinder Singh Chaggar  on tabla.

This clip, filmed by the BBC at the 2007 Brecon International Jazz Festival also features Carl Herring (guitar) and Bhupinder Singh Chaggar (tabla).  Niebla talks about his origins and the influences on his music.

Here, Eduardo Niebla performs on RTE in 2008 with guitarist Carl Herring, prior to a concert tour of Ireland.

Niebla has lived in Yorkshire for the past 30 years, and this clip features Eduardo at home in his North Yorkshire studio and in rehearsal for the premiere of a work commissioned by The Ripon International Festival in 2007. 150 young people took part including pupils from St. Aidan’s High School, Ripon Grammar, Holy Trinity Junior School, St. Wilfrid’s Primary School and The Dales School for children with special needs.

Taking a bow at the end of the concert, Niebla expressed his pleasure at being able to play in such a wonderful space.  As we streamed out into the darkness of the park, the Palm House was lit up, brilliant white against the night sky.

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