PROGRAM NOTES: TOMATITO ~ Fall 2016 North American Tour (revised 18-April-2016)
"One of Spain´s greatest guitarists... a flamenco virtuoso! When he plays, it´s easy to understand that a genius like Camarón
could only talk musically to a genius like Tomatito." Miami Herald
"Tomatito is the most eminent guitarist in flamenco. [He plays] with such clean intent that it was possible for you to feel the energy and gesture and contrast in those individual notes and phrases as if you were playing them yourself." Ben Ratliff/New York Times
Guitar : Tomatito
Second Guitar: José del Tomate
Clapping/Vocals: Kiki Cortiñas & David Maldonado
Percussion: Israel Suárez “Piraña"
Baile (dancer): José Maya
Sound technician: Juan Antonio Fornés Rituort
Artist Manager: Manuel Fernández Vega
Tour Manager: Juan Castro
(Set list to be announced from stage. There will be NO intermission.)
Miguel Marin – Manager
Booking Agency/Tour Direction – SRO Artists, Inc.
“El flamenco es autentico cuando es sincero y emana del corazón, Las fusiones también pueden ser auténticas y de hecho, el flamenco nace de la fusión -o mas bien la aglomeración de muchas culturas musicales a lo largo de varios siglos.
“Mi forma de tocar ahora plasma experiencias vividas dentro y fuera del ámbito estrictamente flamenco. Cada concierto es una especie de “vuelta a casa” en el que defino lo que hago y siento en un momento dado de mi vida.
“La huella divina, la de Camarón de la Isla, la llevaré toda la vida. No puede ser de otra manera. No es tanto una influencia, sino una luz de guía y en cierto modo, mi razón de ser. Él me decía “José, tú no te equivoques, un flamenco tiene que tocar flamenco”. Esa frase se ha convertido en mi lema. Toca lo que sea, tócalo con sinceridad pero siempre, desde el flamenco, que es lo que soy.
“En el Teatro de la Maestranza voy a ofrecer un recorrido por todas las posibilidades del flamenco, desde lo añejo hasta lo mas vanguardista. Haré algún que otro guiño al Tango argentino, a la Rumba y a otras cosas que he ido absorbiendo estos años. Mi concierto en directo es un recital musical con pinceladas de cante y baile.
“Creo que la guitarra ya se vale por si misma, es universal y puede perfectamente ser instrumento protagonista. Por lo demás, la familia, el trabajico, la vida.......siempre con la guitarrica a cuestas.....” - José Fernández Torre “TOMATITO”
"Flamenco is authentic when it is sincere and comes from the heart, Fusion can also be authentic, in fact, flamenco itself is an amalgam, or rather the agglomeration of many musical cultures which have blended throughout the centuries. The way I play now reflects experiences gleaned from inside and outside the strictly flamenco milieu. Each concert is a kind of "returning home" in which I define what I do and feel at a given moment of my life. The divine imprint of Camarón de la Isla, is something I will carry throughout my lifetime. It can’ t be other way. He is not so much an influence, but a guiding light and somehow, my reason for being. He told me "José, make no mistake, a flamenco’ s gotta play flamenco". That phrase has become my motto. Play whatever you play, but always sincerely and from the flamenco source, which is where we come from.On this year’ s visit to the U.S. I will offer a ‘ tour’ of all the possibilities of flamenco, from the old to the most avant-garde. I will give the odd nod to Argentine Tango, Rumba and the other things I've been absorbing these past years. My live show is a musical recital with touches of singing and dancing. I believe the flamenco guitar can now stand alone, it is universal and serves also as a protagonist beside that of family, work, life...always with my “guitarrica” in tow” - José Fernández Torres "TOMATITO"
José Fernández Torres, better known as Tomatito, is a living legend of the glories of the flamenco guitar. He has presented his art the world over, from New York to Moscow, from the Middle East to Hong Kong. In all his performances has been hailed as one of the best guitarists in the world.
Tomatito was born in Almería, southern Spain, surrounded by guitars. Since childhood he listenied to his father and grandfather, Miguel Tomate. He is the nephew of legendary Flamenco guitarist Miguel Niño. At age 12 he moved to the city of Malaga, where he started his career playing flamenco clubs like La Taberna Gitana. There he met Paco de Lucía and Camarón de la Isla.
Gradually, his extraordinary powers drew attention from critics and fans. He began to play with great singers like Enrique Morente or La Susi, but his greatest pride is to have played with the legendary Camarón de la Isla for the last 18 years of his life.
Alongside Camarón, Tomatito recorded discs that are now essential references in the flamenco archive, such as "La Leyenda del Tiempo " and "Como el Agua". In the latter, Tomatito accompanies with Paco de Lucía.
After the death of Camarón, Tomatito began his career as a soloist, dazzling audiences with his exquisite sensitivity.His charismatic personality and a firm commitment to the development and dissemination of flamenco worldwide mean that Tomatito now enjoys the recognition he deserves, not only in the field of music but also in film, theater and art.
He has won a total of five Grammy Awards (one with Michel Camilo) and a Latin Grammy for his albums "Aguadulce" and “Soy Flamenco”.
He has collaborated with many performers from around the world, such as Elton John and Frank Sinatra, and has influenced a whole generation of young guitarists. And on the occasions when he has ventured into other musical fields, such as jazz, has always remained true to his principles.
His latest album, "Soy Flamenco", presents an elegant and mature musician at the height of his art.