Saturday, April 09, 2011

Musical treat - Leonidas Gonzalez

We were in a hotel in Quepos, Costa Rica and heard outside a band playing "Knocking on Heavens". It sounded great and we headed to the bar to hear more. What greeted us was a solo guitarist, playing a classical guitar, with a Boss drum machine. There were only two other folks in a very large room. Being happy hour we figured what do we have to lose and sat down to listen. What a great decision! The guitarist, Leonidas Gonzalez. was amazing. He played a few Latin tunes and realizing that we were Americans started playing Eagles, Bob Marley, Bob Dylan and a host of others. We asked for Santana and he not only nailed all of Carlos's licks but added more on top, all on a classical guitar. What was especially impressive was his blending classical, rock, and Latin styles. Clean, fast, and improvising while keeping to the melody. We ending up being captivated for almost two hours. I think he was equally thrilled having an appreciative audience. As we finally said our goodbyes and left to eat dinner, I realized how lucky we were to have had the opportunity to listen to him play. I can't help wondering, how many amazing musicians there are around the world, who are happy to play no matter the size of the audience.

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