The Gipsy Kings are never going to have the kind of critical acclaim that Paco de Lucia has, but their popularization of poppy rumba flamenca among non-Spanish speakers is nothing to be ashamed of. Nonetheless, here on Roots, the octet turns back to the tradition while making their own imprint on it. Having the band record in an old farm house, producer Craig Street, it seems, simply told them to sit down to play their bittersweet songs. Without electric instruments or a drum set to clutter the mix, brisk acoustic guitars will sweep listeners up in the driving rhythms as lead guitarist Tonino Baliardo soars overhead, particularly on the instrumental songs. When Nicolas, Canut and Patchai Reyes take turns on lead vocals, Street adeptly captures the timbre and nuance of the singers' voices while also delicately balancing the guitar, hand percussion and bass. No pop songs or bombastic rock beats:here's one that purists cannot argue with.
There are a few artists out there that, without trying to change the world, succeeded in accomodating the old recipes to the present day. In the domain of Progressive rock, The Flower Kings is the perfect example. Following a path not unsimilar to Spock's Beard's, the swedish band led by guitarist Roine Stolt achieved to leave its mark in the middle of the Nineties, accompanying the rebirth of Progressive rock. It remains on top of the genre nowadays. It is no surprise then if, after having paid tribute to most of the giants of the Golden Seventies, the artists of today tend to care about that second generation as well. That's how the Musea label and the Colossus fanzine created an album in four CDs, tailor-made for the excellency of The Flower Kings: "A Flower Full Of Stars - A Tribute To The Flower Kings".
The band has a core rhythm section, but features a revolving combination of all-star guest front men and women. These recordings feature the talents of Gary Brooker, Georgie Fame, Albert Lee, Andy Fairweather Low, Chris Rea, Beverley Skeete, Mick Taylor and George Harrison (amongst his last recordings) on an intriguing and varied selection of covers and originals.
As leaders of the flamenco music genre, the Gipsy Kings have thrilled audience's worldwide for over 16 years. Here, they are captured in a live performance at the legendary Kenwood House in London. At this majestic setting on the water in front of thousands of fans, the Gipsy Kings play some of their greatest hits, including 'Baila Me' and 'Volare'.