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Best of Esteban

20 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 17, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

With his latest release, Best of Esteban, one of the world's most prolific composers and guitarists of our time has not merely created a retrospective. Instead of a simple cut-and-paste collection, the man once known as Stephen Paul took a handful of concert favorites and returned to the studio to reinvent them. The result is a fiery, blues/rock/flamenco melding of the songs that have made him a beloved icon in classical and modern guitar playing.Trademark songs like Fuego Malague¤a - a reworking of Malague¤a from 2001's All My Love have, as the title denotes, been given extra fire, fusing more rock influence into his atmospheric flamenco-based performance. Runaway, Del Shannon's classic, is also seeing life in a completely new way. That song brings back a lot of memories for people who were around back then, Esteban says, seeing it as a bridge to younger audiences as well. Another song bringing back more recent memories is Mediterana, an Eastern-based song in which he plays sitar, backed by the Indian percussive tablas and dumbuk.


1. Besame Much Interlude
2. Besame Much
3. Fuego Malaguena
4. Alicante
5. Porto Alegre Interlude
6. Porto Alegre
7. Here Comes The Sun
8. Mediterana
9. Fernando
10. Enter The Heart
11. Only Love
12. Runaway

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 17, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Strip City Records
  • ASIN: B000I5YD7S
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,268 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By RBSProds TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 17, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Five Stars for one of the world's greatest guitarists!! "Best of Esteban" could also be called Esteban's favorites because he has decided to re-record these hand picked songs adding a different fire and spirit to these wonderful songs. The performances range from soothing to sizzling, and are always fascinating. Songs selected come from basic Esteban CD's such as "All My Love", "Enter the Heart", "Flamenco Y Rosas", and "Songs from My Heart". His performance, along with his very talented daughter violinist Teresa Paul and the 11 piece band, is wonderful, eclectically wonderful so it will suit the listening pleasure of a number of music listeners with a taste for classical, flamenco, pop, and jazzy-tinged treatments of these compositions. No nepotism here, Teresa Paul is a fiery player and her leads and counterpoint with her dad are spellbinding.

The Pieces De Resistance, the best of the best, begin with the beautiful guitar/violin interplay on the intro to the evergreen "Besame Mucho", the awesome guitar fingerings of "Fuego Malaguena", the clave-heavy "Alicante" with a great group performance and a hot trumpet solo. "Only Love" is a great solo guitar performance. He also selects old favorites like George Harrison's "Here Comes The Sun" from the Beatles' "Abbey Road" recording and Del Shannon's "Runaway", which may seem like an odd choice but totally works for Esteban. In all, a wonderful set of performances by the guitar wizard and his group. The longest performance comes in around 5:26 and the total CD time is over 40 minutes. Just remember there are other versions out there in previous recordings which are different performances from these songs. Highly Recommended. Five BLAZING Stars!!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Blake Gregory on November 26, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Make no mistake, Esteban is one of the Masters of the Classical style guitar. He plays with a smooth simplistic style that cries out to be appreciated in a time of so many guitarists that play overdriven elctric features. Esteban brings class and style to the guitar that few can ever hope to bring. I cannot encourage you enough to check out this wonderful guitarists efforts by buying this CD. You will not go wrong. Esteban is the Master of the Guitar!
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Thomas D. Ryan on October 26, 2006
Format: Audio CD
No, not Gloria Estefan.

No, not Ricardo Montalban, either (selling Cordobas with interiors made from the finest Corinthian pleather...), although you'd be excused for the confusion. Montalban is remembered for his role on Fantasy Island, and prime-time TV car commercials. Most people only have a vague recollection of Esteban from his own late-night television commercials, when he hawked his latest album with cornball imagery and track samples. This (largely non-existent) correlation would naturally lead you to think of Esteban as a commercial gimmick artist, and it doesn't help matters that his recordings are often labeled as `New Age'. I think that he would be better served if labeled as a `world' artist, since his recordings have a flamenco flair with an accessibility that reaches well beyond the borders of Spain.

But Holy Jesus, I must be wrong! As I'm writing this, an informercial just popped up on the television with Esteban hawking his latest guitar program! Am I suddenly living in an alternate universe? The truth is probably much more mundane - I hate TV, so I simply haven't seen the Esteban TV segments - but obviously, this guy is a signpost of our culture, like Slim Whitman was in the seventies, only with dark sunglasses and a flat-brimmed hat.

Esteban was taught by Andres Segovia, one of the best classical guitarists of our age, but his career was halted when injuries sustained from a serious car accident prevented him from playing for ten years. When he could finally re-approach his instrument, he did so with a positivity that may be responsible for the unfortunate `new age' tag. This "Best of" collection transcends any such label, and it forces me to take the guy seriously.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By flamenko on November 30, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Esteban brings something new and refreshing into the world of music. He is original, entertaining, inspirational, easy listening and has amazing skills. I wanted to start playing guitar for a long time but was putting it off constantly until I heard Esteban play. You will probably find some of your favorite songs played by Esteban, but in guitar version. Classical guitar is the best sounding instrument and Esteban demonstrates guitar's capabilities in the best way. He often plays one song in several different versions which is always refreshing (I mean Paco De Lucia today is the same Paco as 25 years ago, pretty boring from my view). I recommend this Esteban CD and all others, including videos.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By CQ DX TOP 1000 REVIEWER on December 10, 2014
Format: Audio CD
I like Esteban. He is a good guitarist, however not a great one. Let's be frank here. His songs are often renditions of other famous artists' compositions, but with his own 'neo-flamenco' bent added to them. His playing (and some of his original songs) is quite good at times, but he is no Strunz & Farah, Govi, or Peter White! That said, his music can, at times, be passionate and beautiful, but some of it does sound a bit 'canned' and cheesy. But very 'well done cheesy' nonetheless! It's still expressive, and even fiery at times. His backup band is tight, and provides a solid rhythm section. Recording-wise, this CD sounds very dynamic and 'airy' on my high-end system, which probably attests to the proper attention paid to the recording and mastering process. Lastly, I must confess that I found this CD for five dollars at a local big box book retailer's 'bargain bin', so it was a good buy for me.
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