It’s 3:10am and my mind is still reeling from the news of Paco de Lucia’s passing. Even though I am not a full-fledged flamenquista, Paco’s influence on me, and countless other guitarists, is undeniable. I feel like l have lost one of my teachers.
As I always do when I deal with grief and sadness, I take to my instrument and play whatever comes to mind. The improvisation below is not any particular Flamenco form nor is it a cover of Paco’s music, but rather a lament… a cry of anguish for this huge loss for the guitar and the entire musical world. Descanse en Paz, Maestro.
I dropped by the LSL Guitars booth at the NAMM Show today and checked out their new Saticoy XT and boy what an AWESOME guitar!
This particular guitar has a bound Swamp Ash body with a baked Maple neck and is equipped with an original Floyd Rose locking tremolo and hot wound LSL humbuckers. The overdriven tone grabs you by the throat with its heavy and aggressive yet articulately clear roar. Rolling back the volume yields a chimey, barely-breaking up bluesy voice that tugs at your soul. There are no dead spots on the neck and notes sustain forever regardless what string or fret you’re on.
I’m proud to announce that I have officially joined the artist endorsers of GruvGear Products! I will be using their VCart to cart my gear around and their Fretwraps to reign in unwanted resonance when recording. Check them out!
It’s that time of year again and I’d like to share this arrangement I did of “The First Noel”. This was recorded several years back and I do plan to re-record it maybe even in a video performance but perhaps I’ll get to it next year.
In the meantime, feel free to share this post and spread some Christmas cheer!
I am humbled and overwhelmed by the generosity and response to my call for donations to Bohol Earthquake Relief a couple of weeks ago. I am very happy to announce that I just sent a donation of $900.00 to Gawad Kalinga USA for their relief operations benefiting their earthquake relief operations in Cebu and Bohol. Click on the image to view the donation receipt.
I cannot thoroughly express in words my gratitude and appreciation to everybody who sent in their donations and also to those who shared my fundraising efforts on their social media channels. I hope my recording of “Sakali” conveys this warmth in my heart and soul brought about by this tremendous act of kindness from all the donors. Mabuhay kayong lahat!
The Philippine island province of Bohol suffered a massive 7.2 earthquake on October 15, 2013 leaving hundreds of people dead and hundreds more injured. Also destroyed were historical structures, churches that were built centuries ago while under the Spanish regime. Also affected was the nearby island of Cebu where more people were killed and injured as well as buildings and structures damaged or destroyed. As of this writing, the area is still experiencing strong aftershocks. News story
This saddens me because my own roots are from this beautiful island. My mother’s father was born there and went on to be among the first Filipino lawyers to have hailed from Bohol. I have personally visited and performed in some of the churches which were magnificent in their old age at the time and it breaks my heart to see that they are now reduced to rubble.
Cebu also holds a special place in my heart and is a frequent concert stop whenever I tour the Philippines. And the ties are clear since Cebu is the guitar capital of the Philippines and I concertize on a guitar built by Cebu Luthier Domingo Javier.
During my last trip to the Philippines I was able to visit Cebu and record a new piece entitled “Sakali” which I have since released on my YouTube channel. In light of this recent disaster I have decided to offer this recording in exchange for donations for disaster relief and help re-build those affected by the deadly earthquake. Please donate any amount you’re comfortable with using the PayPal button below and I will forward all the proceeds to Gawad Kalinga http://gk-usa.org, an established non-profit organization dedicated to helping and rebuilding communities in the Philippines. As soon as I receive your donation I will send a high quality MP3 of “Sakali” to the email address used in the PayPal donation.
Please help. Give a little bit and please share this post to all your connections. Thank you for your kind support.
PERFECTO DE CASTRO
**UPDATE 11/4/2013** I have wrapped up this fundraising effort and have sent $900.00 to Gawad Kalinga for their earthquake relief operations. Read about it here. If you still wish to make a donation, please send directly to Gawad Kalinga USA.