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Elegant Gypsy


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Audio CD, August 21, 1984
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Editorial Reviews


1. Flight over Rio
2. Midnight Tango
3. Mediterranean Sundance
4. Race With Devil on Spanish Highway
5. Lady of Rome, Sister of Brazil
6. Elegant Gypsy Suite

Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 21, 1984)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
  • ASIN: B0012GMV6W
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (91 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,686 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

57 of 59 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Arenson on February 16, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Al Dimeola, at the time of this release, was the best fusion guitarist on the planet. (Mclaughlin lacked the energy that he had before Mahavishnu broke up and Holdsworth had yet to reach the great heights that he would find in the eighties). Dimeola is at his best composition wise as well as in his playing. "Flight Over Rio" and "Midnight Tango" are examples of this. Al and a Les Paul are meant to be together. "Mediterannean Sundance" is a duet with Paco DeLucia and a complete acoustic extravaganza.The guitar artistry displayed by both is unbelievable. This is a piece that can be listened to over and over. "Race With the Devil on Spanish Highway" is the electric extravaganza and a favorite of anybody that has heard it. Unison 32nd note lines are just a part of this Dimeola classic. The writing is amazing and Al has never sounded better. The rest of the disc consists of a percussion piece and then finally there is the title track which is another Dimeola masterwork. The band on this disc is incredible. Jan Hammer, Steve Gadd, Anthony Jackson, and Mingo Lewis all are phenomenal musicians in there own right and Dimeola has all of them playing at their usual amazing heights. If you are only familiar with RTF and are wondering why Al would leave them for a solo career this disc has the answers. A must have for any jazz/fusion fan or guitar enthusiast.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By April Cody on March 13, 2006
Format: Audio CD
In my opinion, this instrumental guitar collection is energetic, and exceptionally moving. I am inspired by anything that Al Dimiola presents, but this collection without peer.

Any DiMiola fan should definately add this to their collection.

Lovers of Jazz/Fusion, Spanish Accustical and excellently clever mastery of guitar will not be disappointed! Only seeing him perform these pieces live was better!!!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By James on October 19, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Al DiMeola was certainly the Jimi Hendrix of the 70's Jazz Fusion movement. And, this is his best disc from that period. Di Meola's music was also a precursor to the best World and New Age music of the 80s and 90s. Just because Jazz-fusion is out of fashion with the Jazz intelligentsia, doesn't mean DiMeola needs to be discounted. On the contrary, he inspired many to seek a new path for jazz's survival into the late 20th century and beyond. He also helped the uninitiated understand that Jazz is a cross-pollinating "bastard" musical form (in the best sense of the word) that is beyond musical category. I love Dixieland Jazz, Stride, Swing, Bebop, Afro-Cuban Jazz, West Coast Cool, Jazz Funk, 80s Neoclassic, Third Wave, etc, etc. I also love the best of Jazz Fusion. This is it!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Rich Yampell on April 11, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Back when I was in junior high school, I subscribed to Guitar Player magazine, and in their annual awards issue, Al DiMeola won best jazz guitarist and this album won best guitar album. I'd never heard of him or it, I knew nothing about jazz or fusion, but hey, 'best guitar album', what did I have to lose? What I heard simply blew my mind, it was unlike anything I was prepared for. It changed my life. It even changed the way I play guitar. Al DiMeola remains my favorite guitarist, and this remains my favorite of his albums. You absolutely cannot go wrong with it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Pink Floyd in Space on February 10, 2012
Format: Audio CD
The Hendrix of Jazz. This is what I have heard people call Al Di Meola. I never had to question why especially after hearing this album. I can name a ton of guitar players with great albums but I would prefer to listen to this album over all of those any second of any day.

I've heard many great guitar albums in my lifetime. The Incredible Jazz Guitar-Wes Montgomery. Blow by Blow-Jeff Beck, None Too Soon-Allan Holdsworth, Blues-Jimi Hendrix, Blues For Salvador-Carlos Santana, Beyond the Blue Horizon-George Benson, and many more that would make this a great list including other albums by Al Di Meola himself.

This album is special. It's consistent. It's a masterpiece. Overall it is the most perfect guitar album of any I have heard.

"Flight to Rio" Is just as important a track for Jan Hammer as for Al di Meola. Hammers contributions to this album are quite big but on this track his contributions are nothing short of enormous and help set the mood for the album.

"Midnight Tango" continues the intense electric Latino guitar style and turns a bit more acoustic. Ends with a really cool congo drum solo.

"Mediterranean Sundance" is an acoustic Latin Fusion number where Paco de Lucia comes in and plays twin lead with Al di Meola. This is one of those tracks that blew me away the most the first time I heard it. Years before they would both join with Mahavishnu John McLaughlin to record a couple of The Guitar Trio albums.

"Race with Devil on Spanish Highway" is an incredibly intense going back to electric driven track with di Meolas Return to Forever bandmate Lenny White wrecking some serious havoc on drums. Absolutely an underrated and gifted drummer.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By The Genius on April 17, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I'm quite new to Al Di Meola, but I'm a seasoned instrumental guitar fan. I had read on Wikipedia that Petrucci was self taught by trying to emulate the sounds of various guitarists like Malmsteen, Holdsworth and Di Meola. I figured, Holdsworth and Malmsteen are pretty big names, so to throw Di Meola in must mean something, because Petrucci after all is... well, we all know what he is capable of. I looked on Amazon.com for Di Meola albums, and Elegant Gypsy looked to the best, based solely on reviews, so I checked it out.

This CD is so incredibly monstrous, that words have a hard describing all the features it encapsulates. Di Meolas finely honed technical ability coupled with interesting tunes and beats make for a superb album. I find that this album sounds quite unlike any other instrumental guitar CD I have ever heard.

This CD was unleashed in 1976, before massively technical playing was popularized by Yngwie. This is one of the reasons I find Di Meola so special. I have never been more impressed with a 30 year old album that sounds like it could have been released just yesterday. It doesn't have the outdated 80's sound that neoclassical shred has picked up.

Im not sure whether to call Di Meola a shred guitarist, I don't really think he is. He obviously has the ability to shred with the best of them, but he tames it and keeps it under control (Yes, that's a good thing).

Now for the actual songs on the album. There are two that really stand out in my mind. Like everybody else, Race with Devil on Spanish Highway, is a superb demonstration of Di Meola's primo technical astuteness coupled with some awe-inspiring songwriting. The song just sounds really good, any way you look at it.
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I'd start with this one,followed by Casino,Land of the Midnight Sun,Hotel Splendora.Al played with Return to Forever before he went solo (check out Romantic Warrior or NO Mystery).As far as the best Trio (assuming Di Meola, Mclaughlin,and De Lucia)the Live one Friday Night is the best.
Oct 14, 2006 by HOG( I WANT IT ALL) |  See all 2 posts
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