Vargas Blues Band – Blues Latino 1994

Vargas Blues Band – Blues Latino 1994


Javier Vargas, the son of Spanish emigrants to Argentina, was born in Madrid soon after his parents left Buenos Aires. When he was nine years old, the family moved back to Argentina, which is where he started playing the guitar.
His earliest influences can be seen in Argentine rock of the late 60s and early 70s, in groups such as Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Cream, The Rolling Stones and The Doors, and in guitarists like Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana and B.B. King, who still provide great inspiration for him today.
In the late 1970s, Javier took his guitar and went to the U.S.A. to study music. He lived in Nashville, Tennessee, and in Los Angeles, where he played in clubs, and also took part in recordings as a session guitar player. Every night he used to jam with American and English musicians and he met many well-known musicians such as Alvin Lee, Roy Buchanan and Cannet Heat, who also influenced his style.
In the 1980s he returned to Spain and became a member of Miguel Ríos‚ band, playing the guitar in several of his albums. He also played with La Orquesta Mondragón, and worked as a session guitar player and composer.
In 1991 he took the most important step of his career and formed his own band.
All Around Blues was the first album recorded by Javier Vargas as the leader of the Vargas Blues Band.
Madrid-Memphis was released in 1992. This second album includes contributions from bluesmen such as Carey Bell and Louisiana Red, flamenco guitar player Rafael Riqueni, and singers Philip Guttman and Jeff Espinoza.
These two albums made a great impact and achieved record sales figures for blues albums in Spain.
The third album, Blues Latino, was released in Spain in 1994. It includes contributions from Flaco Jiménez, Chris Rea, Junior Wells, and Andrés Calamaro. The album was extraordinarily well-received by a greatly varied audience. It was also released in Argentina and, as a result of the success it had there, the Vargas Blues band performed in Buenos Aires to great critical and public acclaim.
The song Blues Latino was recorded by Carlos Santana and released worldwide as a number of his album Santana Brothers. Santana played Blues Latino at Woodstock 1994.
In May 1995 Texas Tango was recorded in the Ardent studios in Memphis and Austin (Texas). Produced by Jim Gaines, this album includes contributions from Double Trouble, (Steve Ray Vaughan‚s band), Larry T. Thurston (Blues Brothers) and Preston Shannon. It has been released in Spain, France, Switzerland, Columbia, Mexico and Brazil.
In 1996, the band played live in Paris, at festivals in France and Portugal and at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.
In July the same year, Carlos Santana invited him to play two songs together in a concert given at the Zenith in Paris. The passion and feeling of the guitar duo stirred the French audience. The invitation was repeated in 1998, to play in Santana‚s concerts in Madrid (Conde Duque) and Paris (Bercy), and in 2000, during the Supernatural Spanish tour.
Gypsy Boogie (1997) was also produced by Jim Gaines. It was recorded in Madrid and Memphis, mixed in Florida and mastered in New York. It includes contributions from artists of the stature of Raimundo Amador, Carles Benavent, La Chonchi, Cuban singer David Montes, Chester Thomson, Lonnie Brooks, Larry McCray, Little Jimmy King, David Allen and Larry Graham (from Sly and The Family Stone). This album was was nominated for the Premios Amigo and released in 24 countries, as a result of which the band extended its tours to France, Italy, Germany and Portugal.
Larry Graham, the current musical director of The Artist ˆThe New Power Generation introduced Javier to The Artist (formerly known as Prince) in December 1998. He invited Javier to play in several numbers of his concert “Jam of the Year” in the “Palacio de los Deportes” in Madrid.
Feedback/ Bluestrology is Vargas´ sixth album, produced in a double CD format. It was recorded in Checkendon in England and co-produced by Ian Taylor (producer of Gary Moore, etc). This album includes the old guest artists from Memphis: Steve Potts, Dave Smith and Ernest Williamson and singers Bobby Alexander and David Montes.
Bluestrology was re-released as a separate album in January 2000.
In November 1999, the Vargas Blues Band recorded their first live album, at Buddy Guy‚s Legends Club in Chicago. The special guest artists were Larry McCray, harmonica player Sugar Blue and flamenco singer Elena Andújar. The concert was recorded by a mobile unit supervised by Ian Taylor. Javier also went on stage at Legends at the invitation of Texan guitarist Chris Duarte. The live album was completed at the Kirios studios in Madrid in December of the same year, in front of hundreds of guests and with distinguished guest artists: Elena Andújar, David Montes, flamenco guitarist Juan Gómez “Chicuelo”, percussionist Gino Pavone, Argentinian accordionist Jorge Lema; and flamenco singer “Marchena”. Ian Taylor also directed the recording. This recording features David “Lads” Sánchez on the keyboards, Jota Marsán on the drums and Fran Montero on the bass guitar.
Madrid-Chicago Live and also a documentary video about the recording went on sale in May 2000.
Last Night includes the songs recorded at Legends and a DVD of the concert in Madrid and some scenes recorded in Chicago. It was released in 2002, and has had excellent reviews in Spain and the rest of Europe and in the U.S.A.
It was in Argentina that Javier Vargas´ passion for music was awakened and where he started to play the guitar. He experienced the National Rock movement there, which began in Buenos Aires.
He was still a kid when he discovered “La Cueva” (the club where musicians got together to jam), the rock festivals of Pin-Up, and B.A.Rock, the emblematic progressive rock festival of Argentina and Uruguay, which was held in the Buenos Aires velodrome. He could see and hear Almendra, Manal, Pappo‚s Blues, Moris, Litto Nebias, Vox Dei, Sui Géneris, Pescado Rabioso, Invisible, Color Humano and other musicians of the Buenos Aires music scene.
He also met La Pesada del Rock & Roll, a prestigious association of rock musicians created by Billy Bond.
In Mar de Plata he shut himself up in garages to play with other musicians, and learnt with expert guitarists Jorge Cámara and Flaco Roy, and also by listening in clubs along the coast to bands.
All the experiences in Argentina were to leave their mark on the later development of Javier Vargas´ career. Without doubt, this is what aroused in him the ever-present desire to form a Spanish-language rock group and thus pay homage to the music that inspired him to start playing the guitar and which even today continues to be an important source of inspiration to him. That is how Espíritu Celeste was born.
Chill Latin Blues, his first solely instrumental album, was released in 2003. In this album the protagonists are Javier Vargas‚ guitar and the fusion of his musical influences.
Javier Vargas has continued to collaborate with a great number of artists as guitarist, producer and composer. His music can be heard in the soundtracks of a variety of films. In addition to touring Spain, France, Italy, Portugal, Canada and Argentina, the Vargas Blues Band has played in several prestigious European festivals, such as the Montreaux Jazz Festival, the German Pop Korn Festival, and the Great British R&B Festival, and also Canadian festivals, such as the Mont-Tremblant Blues Festival, always with great success.
01. Intro  1:09
02. Rock away the blues  4:09
03. Coward´s knife  3:55
04. Brand new blues  3:40
05. Out of the blues  4:00
06. Hot Wires  3.44
07. Do you believe in love  5:18
08. Blues latino  5:34
09. Magic of the gods  4:20
10. Amapola negra  3:07
11. Fear  3:16
12. Mexico city blues  4:21
13. Pachuco boogie/Jeff’s boogie   3:09

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