cristianamigo.com_nyc bluesero

Guggenheim and Fulbright award-winning guitarist, composer, producer, and educator Cristian Amigo plays contemporary blues, free jazz, r&b, dub, rock, and new music with an open ear and an expansive mind. For Amigo, the blues are the “source of American popular music,” and constitute the formal foundation of his electric and acoustic guitar sound. Inspired by music from country blues to hard bop, Chicago electric blues to r&b, and from London to Mali to NYC to Bolivia, Amigo draws inspiration from classic artists such as Miles, Mingus, Monk, and Hendrix, while being committed to new blues paths both abstract and popular.
Based on his Fulbright teaching in Bolivia (2016-19), Amigo is currently developing the bilingual (English and Spanish) on-line guitar/theory lessons The Simple Path with the Pua Escuela de Rock in Cochabamba, Bolivia and back home in NYC. The Simple Path uses a few simple tools (pentatonic minor scale, triads) to give intermediate to advanced guitarists immediate access to all the new and altered sounds, or “colors” (a la George Benson) available on the guitar, with techniques they already know.
 Amigo earned a Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology from UCLA and studied with Kenny Burrell, Wadada Leo Smith, Cheik Tidiane Seck, Harihar Rao, Randy Wolff, and Bern Nix.
” Guitarist-composer Cristian Amigo straddles the contemporary-classical, improv and rock worlds; no wonder he calls his Kingdom of Jones a “new music jam-band.” During any given performance, Messiaen grapples with Led Zeppelin while Perez Prado teaches Stravinsky to mambo.”
“ I kind of hate myself for digging this abrasive clatter [War is Good for Business] because it’s galaxies away from my Beatles- and Beethoven-forged sense of composition. But it rocks real hard against its orchestra of bloops and bleeps, and then breaks down to a mournful sound collage. A great theme for Halliburton’s symphony of opportunism.
“Cristian Amigo is an excellent creative artist, guitarist and composer whose works reflect his concern with tradition and innovation in creative music in America.”
– WADADA LEO SMITH (AACM composer/trumpeter)

“The blues are about the transcendence of the difficulties of living that all people face. The blues also exist as sound AND feeling AND and as particular social histories and sonic trajectories.”
“For me, truth and honesty are the blues artist’s greatest assets. I seek those qualities, above all, in my own music.”
Amigo has collaborated with hundreds of artists including Grammy, Pulitzer, Oscar, Emmy, and MacArthur genius winners (see name drop list). The 2012 New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (Oxford Press) contains an entry on Amigo and his music. Recent performances include the NYC Latin FreeJazz Festival, Vision Festival, NYC Alternative Guitar Festival, and The World Festival of Sacred Music (LA). He is currently composer-in-residence at INTAR Latino Theater in New York City and on a Fulbright (2017-19), teaching theory and improvisation at UMSS and Pua Escuela de Rock in Cochabamba, Bolivia
Amigo’s goal since he began playing the guitar at twelve was to “become the best musician and guitarist I could possibly be, and that song remains the same. In order to do that, my teachers and elders insisted that I listen to and study the best musicians in the world. So my real blues influences range from Louis Armstrong to Charlie Patton to Jelly Roll Morton to Charlie Parker to Ella Fitzgerald, Thelonious Monk to Nina Simone to Lightnin’ Hopkins, Miles Davis to Muddy Waters, George Benson to Curtis Mayfield, John Coltrane to Jimi Hendrix to Ornette Coleman to Led Zeppelin to Sonny Sharrock to Ali Farka Toure and beyond.”

2 Responses to cristianamigo.com_nyc bluesero

  1. Pingback: Coney Island's mayor says: don't elect (or shoot) a Republican

  2. OMG. I totally remember you. I hope all is well with you too. Visited St. Aedans a few years back…quite a different place these days. I am in touch with Oscar Okwu and Patrick MacCormack from our grade. I did survive, but am kind of anti-clerical these days, probably because of the closet. 🙂 I’m on FB is you would like to communicate that way. also, my email is Really nice to hear from you. The best recent news is that I have a one year old daughter Daisy (my first) and I am overwhelmed with love for her.

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