Carlos del Junco’s harmonica playing has been compared to Jimi Hendrix’s guitar skills. He is playing with his band The Blues Mongrels at the Roxy Theatre on Sunday

Harmonica master Carlos del Junco comes to Revelstoke

Carlos del Junco first heard a harmonica in Grade 9 and it was love at first note.

By Percy Hebert, Black Press

Carlos del Junco first heard a harmonica in Grade 9 and it was love at first note.

“I was immediately caught by the sound he [friend] made bending a note,” del Junco said as he recalled the moment he fell in love with the harmonica.

In no time del Junco was imitating the sounds of the top bluesmen such as Little Walter and Paul Butterfield.

Although Neil Young and Bob Dylan had popularized the harmonica in their music, harmonica player Howard Levy, who played in Bela Fleck and The Flecktones, advised del Junco to seek inspiration elsewhere.

“That was the best piece of advice I have ever received,” del Junco said.

“Brilliant songwriters that they are, they are the guys who have given the harmonica a bad name.

“The public perception is of a very limited sound to be produced on this unassuming instrument.”

del Junco took the advice to heart and forged ahead listening to an eclectic mix of music and working on his technique and he began to push the boundaries, drawing inspiration from other instruments such as the saxophone, guitar and piano to produce what has been called a, “musical rainbow,” of sounds.

“I love seeing the expressions on people’s faces once they have experienced a set of music,” del Junco said.

“I always hear from people, ‘I had no idea it could sound like so many different instruments.’”

Del Junco’s mastery of the harmonica has been recognized world-wide, with gold medals at the World Harmonica Championships in Germany and multiple nods as Harmonica Player of the Year at the Maple Leaf Blues Awards.

There is no question the foundation of del Junco’s musical style is firmly based in the blues standards, but he gives those songs a serious makeover.

“I love taking old blues standards, flipping them upside down and breathing new life into them,” del Junco said.

But del Junco’s musical roots run deeper than the blues as he also enjoys slipping into jazz, blurring into Latin or even some hip-hop.

“We play an incredibly eclectic program that can go from a quiet ballad, world beat folk, or spiritual to a romping up tempo blues,” del Junco explained.

Providing the counterpoint to del Junco’s harmonica are The Blues Mongrels, bassist Henry Heillig, guitarist Paul Pigat and Mark Mariash on drums.

Del Junco and The Blue Mongrels are performing at the Roxy Theatre on Sunday, March 25 at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $20.

 

Just Posted

Avalanche control scheduled tomorrow on Highway 1 east of Revelstoke

Avalanche control work is scheduled along Highway 1 on Dec 15. From… Continue reading

Highlights from recent school board meeting in Revelstoke

Soon-to-arrive Syrian family, budget update, and upcoming silent action were discussed

Okanagan College unlocks time capsule

Items placed in 1993 and kept in capsule in library opened at special ceremony

Special Public Avalanche Warning for Most Mountainous Regions of BC

Avalanche Canada is issuing a Special Public Avalanche Warning for recreational backcountry… Continue reading

Revelstoke developer frustrated with permit delays

Phase 2-3 of Mackenzie Village has been with city staff for 18 months

VIDEO: Royals reveal the images on their Christmas cards

Prince William and his wife Kate are shown outside in casual clothes, their three young children in tow

ICBC to apply for 6.3% hike to basic insurance rates

Crown Corporation said it will be submitting its next basic rate application to the British Columbia Utilities Commission Friday

Media, robotics, Indigenous studies coming to B.C. Grade 12 classrooms in 2019-20

Provincial tests are also being changed for students in Grade 10 to 12, the Education Ministry said

Stranded B.C. trucker writes final wishes before being rescued 3 days later

‘I was just praying someone would come along’

Canfor Corp. extending temporary curtailment of sawmills in B.C.; cutting hours

Vancouver-based company says the decision is due to declining lumber prices, high log costs and log supply constraints

Canada’s prospective world junior team members await final roster decisions

Thirty-four players were invited to the national junior selection camp

Family searching for B.C. professor last seen at Colombian salsa club

Ramazan Gencay, a professor in economics at Simon Fraser University, was last seen in Medellin

Final phase of Kelowna hospital cardiac centre completed

Finishing new recovery rooms last stage of $381 million project

Rash of bomb threats a learning opportunity for response capacity, Goodale

Thursday’s wave of bomb threats swept across communities on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border

Most Read