March 19, 2020, 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm | Thursday
Program Fee: $25
Program Fee Member: $21.25
“It's not likely that you'll ever hear the harmonica played so well and in so many different ways than at the hands of Cuban-born Torontonian Carlos del Junco.” – John Terauds
Returning to artsPlace after a sold out show in 2018, to say del Junco only plays the harmonica is like saying "Jimi Hendrix only plays guitar". He blows the blues harp through a prism - suddenly it seems he's holding every color in the musical rainbow right there in his hands. Simultaneously sophisticated and raw, his playing blurs the boundaries between blues and jazz delivering a seamless fusion of New Orleans second line grooves, swing, Latin, hip-hop or ska melodies, to swampy roots rock.
Born in Havana, Cuba, del Junco (loosely translated "of the reeds") immigrated with his family at the age of one. He bent his first note on a harmonica when he was fourteen, making his debut with his high school math teacher at a student talent night. Playing a ten hole diatonic harmonica, Carlos has developed the unique ability to play chromatically by using a recently developed "overblow" technique taught to him by jazz virtuoso Howard Levy. Overall, this approach to the diatonic harmonica, although much more difficult to achieve, is in many ways more expressive and communicative than the mechanized tone produced by the chromatic harmonica . Carlos is one of the few pioneers of this overblow method, bringing musical credibility to what has still been considered by many in the music industry a fringe folk instrument. The sophisticated sound produced by del Junco is at once sensitive, soulful, and sexy while never forgetting the rawness inherent in blues music.
Canadian Maple Blues Awards' Harmonica Player of the Year - EIGHT times
2016 Maple Leaf Blues Nomination for Best Harmonica Player
2010 JUNO Nomination for STEADY MOVIN' cd
2005 Best Blues Award - NOW Magazine
1998 JUNO Nomination for BIG BOY cd
1996 Blues Musician of the Year Award - Jazz Report Magazine