A couple of months ago, during the interval at one of the Bridge Music Thursday gigs, I noticed that the people at the table behind me – a group which included Rob Adams – had copies of this year’s Celtic Connections brochure. When I asked where they’d got them, Rob kindly gave me his copy, and urged me to go to see Leo Blanco, who is playing at the Strathclyde Suite this Sunday.
Having already heard Blanco playing with a Laura Macdonald group, I already knew how good he was. He plays great piano, writes great latin-tinged jazz tunes, and despite having a fabulous technique (he won the Billboard Magazine Endowed Scholarship at Berklee a few years back) never resorts to mere showing off. Rob Adams recommends going to see Leo Blanco on Sunday. I recommend going to see Leo Blanco on Sunday. Go to see Leo Blanco on Sunday.
According to his own web site, he’s playing with a quartet, although there’s no indication if he’s bringing a band with him or will be working with local musicians.
The support band is Keltic Tales, a Breton outfit who include another musician who’s worked with Laura Macdonald, bass player Gildas Boclé. The Celtic Connections brochure says of them that they “never set out to sound consciously Celtic, yet those influences echo intriguingly through their all-original jazz/rock/world material”.
Oh, and just in case there’s any confusion, it’s Leo Blanco the Venezulean jazz pianist who’s playing. There’s another Leo Blanco who makes electronic dance music – he might be excellent in his own sphere, but it’s not him I’m talking about.
The concert is in the Strathclyde Suite at the Concert Hall, and starts at 8pm. Tickets cost £12.50. More information and online ticket sales.