BWW Feature: RAUL MIDON at Myron's Cabaret Jazz At The Smith Center For The Performing Arts
Grammy-nominated multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter Raul Midón performs beyond any labels, styles, or genres. Las Vegas audiences will get to enjoy this unique artist at Myron's Cabaret Jazz at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts on Nov. 9.
His latest album (his 10th one), If You Really Want, with the Metropole Orkest conducted by Vince Mendoza, has been released. Midón's guitar playing is a syncopated, flamenco-and jazz-infused marvel in which bass, harmony, and melodic lines fly. Midón has also perfected his unique improvisational mouth-horn technique, in which he creates a bebop "trumpet" solo entirely with his lips.
His earliest influences began with his musically inclined parents. Growing up in the 1970s, they would listen to music and play bongo drums.
"We didn't have devices when I was growing up. My childhood was very active, and that included playing records and making stuff up," Midón says. He credits his father's extensive and eclectic taste in music so he would listen to artists like John Cage when he was young and genres beyond contemporary and mainstream hits. "It opened up my ears as sound, not just a song with lyrics."
His signature combination of silky tenor voice and percussive guitar style combines jazz, pop, R&B, and Latin. His diverse career includes performing with Jennifer Lopez, Shakira, Julio Iglesias, and Christina Aguilera.
As for performing with the Metropole, Midón says the album was the product of "both an exciting live experience and a thoughtful, meticulous process. The recording started with me singing guide vocals and playing guitar live with the Metropole ensemble in the studio in Holland - that gave the orchestra the real vibe of the songs. Then, once the ensemble parts were tracked, I took the recordings home, taking my time to re-cut the vocals and guitar so that they were as nuanced as possible."
While some might want to box in his music with niche labels, everyone can access his music, which appeals to a wide range of tastes. However, he admits that "the possibility is there, but if someone goes on YouTube, it can be an amazing amount of noise. People have to know where to look. However, artists have the chance to take back some of their power and reach out to niche audiences without the corporate influence."
This performance will be his first time as a headliner at The Smith Center, and Midón is excited about appearing there. His worldwide audience is very passionate, and he appeals to a sophisticated crowd.
By the way, Midón is blind but don't compare him to anyone else. He is an artist with a style of his own and his virtuoso styling has been featured on "The Late Show." He has also performed as well as discussed his unique life journey in a TED Talk.
Raul Midón will be performing at Myron's Cabaret Jazz at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts on Nov. 9. For information and tickets, visit here.