Photo by Anya Batels-Suermondt

WHEN:  Thursday, March 9, 7:30 pm

WHERE: Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain, 2801, 16 St, NW

Musicians Josemi Carmona (flamenco guitar) and Javier Colina (double bass), along with percussionist Bandolero, will present at the Former Residence of Spain in Washington D.C., their latest album ‘De cerca’.

Guitar and double bass, flamenco and jazz, meet together to explore a repertoire conceived with refinement and love to detail. Gems of the Latin American songbook live together with the elegant compositions of Josemi Carmona, and with some astonishing discoveries in jazz and flamenco. Their live performance is delicate and powerful at equal parts: they are accomplices in this dialogue and dive into all genres with a deep knowledge and personality. They know how to respect the meaning of time in each music, they dominate improvisation and understand when it is necessary to pause for a rest in an exquisite nocturne melody. They speak elegantly about bitter truths, love stories, long nights of music, flamenco tangos and ‘muñequitas lindas’, and weep with a flamenco farruca with a bouquet to Piazzolla.


Josemi Carmona is one of the fundamental figures in the recent history of Spanish music, flamenco, and guitar. A son of maestro Pepe Habichuela, Josemi is an heir to a crucial 4-generation legacy of decisive Granada artists, initiated by his great- grandfather ‘Habichuela el Viejo’. He started playing guitar at the age of 3, thereafter developing a distinct career standing out for the sensuality of his melodies, the delicacy of his compositions and his unique capacity to blend flamenco with many other musical languages and genres – like jazz, salsa, bossa nova, rai or even mandinga music. At 14 years of age he joined Ketama, one of the most influential and revolutionary bands in Spanish music, selling over 1 million of their 14 albums. Simultaneously, he closely collaborated with world-class artists such as Paco de Lucía, Alejandro Sanz and Jorge Pardo, and as producer for Niña Pastori and La Barbería del Sur.

«Josemi plays few notes, but making so much sense of them, with such an air and sensitivity, with such unique harmonies, that they get a grip on you», said Paco de Lucía about him. After a career of 20 years in Ketama, he continued developing his own distinctive artistic signature by merging new elements to traditional flamenco performance. He has collaborated with international artists such as Dave Holland, Nittin Sawhney, Bugge Wesseltoft, or Jorge Drexler. Among his most renowned recordings are Sumando (2006) with Carles Benavent, and Hands (2010) with Pepe Habichuela and Dave Holland. He was nominated for the Latin Grammys in 2011 as “Best Flamenco Album” for his famous work, Las Pequeñas Cosas


Javier Colina is one of the best double bass players of the current scene, a self-taught musician who started on his own after studying piano, accordion and guitar. An artist with an unquenchable curiosity, Colina has travelled –literally & artistically- to countless musical places and expressions, with a depth and knowledge seldom seen. His career has led him to play with renowned jazz musicians such as George Cables, Tete Montoliú, Chucho Valdés, Jerry González, Perico Sambeat and Jorge Pardo.

Out of jazz, he has collaborated with flamenco stars such as Tomatito, El Bola, Pepe Habichuela, Diego El Cigala or Enrique Morente, and he has experimented with the Cuban sound, accompanying artists such as Compay Segundo, Pancho Amat and Bebo Valdés – in the historical Lágrimas Negras-, and in duo in a week of memorable performances recorded live at the Vanguard Village in New York. He has also made music with Giovanni Hidalgo, Pat Metheny, Michel Camilo and Toumani Diabaté, among others. He won numerous awards and published Si te contara, an album where he mixes jazz with Cuban sounds, accompanying Pancho Amat, master of the Cuban tres . With Miralta Hill Sambeat CMS Trio he has released two albums with great success of critics and audience, and performed all over the world.

In 2010 he presented the album Colina-Serrano Project, with harmonica player Antonio Serrano, where fusion and Latin American rhythms were present without limits. His former work as a leader, selecting and arranging a review of the classic songbook of Cuban music, is En la imaginación , with the Catalan singer Silvia Pérez Cruz.


José Manuel Ruiz Motos, better known as Bandolero, is one of the most recognized percussionists in the current flamenco scene. Born in Madrid in 1976, he began his musical career by accompanying some great flamenco artists such as Antonio Canales, Joaquín Grilo, Manuela Vargas, Merche Esmeralda and Sara Baras. Joaquín Cortés and his flamenco dance company gave him the chance to tour in the best international venues such as the Radio City Music Hall of New York, the Sydney Opera House or the Royal Albert Hall. Additionally, he has performed and recorded with artists like Enrique Morente, Tomatito, Diego El Cigala, Vicente Amigo or Pepe Habichuela. He created with Ramón Porrina the percussion group Echegaray – whose name is a tribute to the Madrid writer José Echegaray, Nobel Prize for Literature in 1904 – and published in 2002 the album Calle Echegaray. Bandolero deeply understands the connection between flamenco and jazz, as he has proven in multiple works with jazz artists: Chano Domínguez, Tino Di Geraldo, Javier Colina, Carles Benavent or Rubem Dantas. He participated in Hands (2007) with Pepe Habichuela and Dave Holland, an album presented at the Central Theater in Seville. In addition, he has worked, to mention only a few of his collaborations, with famous guitarist Pat Metheny, La Barbería del Sur and Ketama. In 2012 he embarked on the Flamencuba project led by the great Latin jazz pianist Javier Massó «Caramelo», along with other great artists like Jorge Pardo, Alain Pérez or Josemi Carmona. He is currently part of Jorge Pardo’s band and plays as a percussionist with Pepe Habichuela.

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