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Gipsy Kings Featuring Nicolas Reyes with Al Olender

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Nicolas Reyes ha sido líder y co-fundador de los Gipsy Kings por más de 30 años. En las últimas tres décadas, han dominado las listas musicales mundial y vendido más de 14 millones de álbumes en todo el mundo. Su recopilación platino, “The Best of the Gipsy Kings”, se mantuvo en las listas durante más de un año despues de su lanzamiento, y su noveno álbum de estudio, “Savor Flamenco”, recibió el premio Grammy al Mejor Álbum de Música del Mundo en el 2013. Acompáñanos el 18 de agosto en el Hult Center para ver a Al Olender.


Nicolas Reyes has been the leader and co-founder of the Gipsy Kings for well over 30 years. In the past three decades, they have dominated the World Music charts and sold more than 14 million albums worldwide. Their platinum compilation, The Best of the Gipsy Kings , was charting for over a year upon its release and their ninth studio album, Savor Flamenco , was awarded the Grammy for Best World Music Album in 2013.

This iconic legacy began when Nicolas’ father, Jose Reyes, formed a celebrated flamenco duo with Manitas de Plata (which boasted fans as famed as Miles Davis and Pablo Picasso). When the pair parted ways, the elder Reyes became even more popular upon starting his own band, backed by his son, called Los Reyes. In later years, Nicolas headed out on his own and began playing in the town of Arles in the south of France. He traveled throughout the country, busking on the streets of Saint Tropez, playing wherever he could. Having adopted the perpetual motion of the gypsy lifestyle, his band eventually translated “Los Reyes” and became the Gipsy Kings.

The band’s music went on to fuse with popular culture. In addition to the accolades above, the traveling Gipsy Kings have played some of the world’s greatest stages, from the Hollywood Bowl to Royal Albert Hall as well as hitting the big screen. Their rendition of “Hotel California” was included in the film The Big Lebowski and the HBO series Entourage . The 2010 film Toy Story 3 featured a Gipsy Kings version of the movie’s popular, Randy Newman penned theme, “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”. The Gipsy Kings recently featured in a Big Lebowski spinoff The Jesus Rolls with Reyes appearing in person with the director and star, John Turturro, for some of the promotion.

As active as this remarkable collective remains, they are also confident in the future of their legacy. “Even though it’s been 30 years, we want to keep on making new music because it’s our life. It’s who we are,” says Nicolas Reyes. “But I think there will be a time when we pass down the Gipsy Kings to our sons”.

30 years is an eternity in pop music but the story of the Gipsy Kings featuring Nicolas Reyes has the depth to endure. Theirs is a music that extends through generations, to the sounds of their ancestors Spanish Romani people who fled the Catalonia region during the Spanish Civil War and reflects the vibrantly eclectic and peripatetic history of the gitanos.

Artist VIP
There will be a VIP element to this tour that includes a premium ticket and a signed copy of Nicolas Reyes’ book via Seated. Details available once you click “Get Tickets”.

Hult Presents

Why you’ll love it:

Gipsy Kings are back with their 9th studio album and it is entirely their own! Produced and written by the Kings, The Washington Post says “the group’s trademark virtuosity and verve are as engaging as ever” on Savor Flamenco. From France with flamenco roots, the band is known for their fluid guitar work and powerful vocals. Globetrotters in the truest sense, the Gipsy Kings create music that crosses borders.

Listen to their latest release here:

Al Olender Bio
There’s nothing scarier than being honest with yourself. For singer/songwriter Al Olender, facing her fear of the truth has been a cleansing, often cathartic process that’s led to the kind of revelations she had previously thought unobtainable. On her debut full-length album Easy Crier, the Upstate New York based artist asks: what happens if we vow to never tell a lie, ever again? Charting the daunting territories of staring your demons right in the face and prodding at the ugly parts of your reflection, Olender pieces together her most vulnerable moments to produce a celebratory and beautiful rumination on grief, and reminds us of the power that comes in really getting to know yourself.

The catalyst for this renewed outlook stems from the sudden loss of her older brother. As a huge supporter of Olender’s musical talents from the very beginning, he would often invite his friends over and encourage a then-teenage Olender to play her “angsty love songs” for them. “Everything that I do musically revolves around my brother,” she says. “It’s like every single thing I do in my life –my brother is so much in the front of my mind.”

The introduction for Easy Crier comes with “All I Do Is Watch TV,” a darkly humorous comment on the unmoored early stages of losing a loved one, way too soon. “I read a book on grief, it told me to lay in bed,” she laments over a chromatic, repetitive melody –the kind that perfectly mimics an untethered, sped-up montage-like existence, as she watches true crime and buys a Big Gulp just to spill it on her bedroom floor. Here, she jabs at the numbness protecting her heart. “Nothing fixes grief,” she explains. “It transforms. Sometimes it’s like a giant glooming thunder cloud and sometimes it’s like a tiny little raindrop.”

On the folky, pop-infused banger “Keith,” Olender confronts her sorrow, as fond memories are abruptly interrupted by a crashing cymbal and animated percussion: an ever-increasing heart rate capturing Olender’s inner-chaos as she witnesses a well-meaning funeral guest showing off a new tattoo. Later, on the devastatingly gorgeous closer “Mean,” a sparse, acoustic arrangement offers a platform for a rousing vocal performance, each note a grief-stricken consolation. “I’m older than my older brother, but I’m not old enough,” she shares softly, searching for someone to keep her safe. Olender strives to use her voice for connection and healing, for herself and for anyone else who’s listening.

Olender recorded at The Church in Harlemville, NY, entrusting the skills of producer and engineer James Felice (Felice Brothers). Felice also lent his skills on keyboard, accordion and piano, with Jesske Hume (bass/synths), William Lawrence (drums/guitar), Ian Felice (guitar), and Alejandro Leon (bass) also contributing. The album’s sonic universe sees delicate keys dance alongside acoustic plucks, later welcoming brooding strings and lush, expansive harmonies. It’s these kinds of arrangements that perfectly capture the sonic personality of Easy Crier: it’s both tender and invigorating, soothing yet anthemic. Describing the arrangements as a “conversation with friends,” it’s a testament to what can happen when you surround yourself with those who totally, and willingly, understand your artistic vision.

Easy Crier isn’t an album about death. It’s an album about unending love. It wipes away the mask we put on for others and instead, embraces the exhale that comes from spilling your guts. It’s the moment in your favorite rom-com when theyfinally admit their feelings for one another, and kiss in a way that only seems to happen in movies; on Easy Crier, Olender plays both parts. There are moments of ease, and exploring the often fine line between funny and sad that makes Easy Criera portal for relief, whether that’s through tears of joy or pain. It’s an album that takes each shattered, heartbroken piece and puts them back together to form a strangely beautiful mosaic. “It’s a love letter to everything I’ve lost,” she says. “And forms a real insight into how telling the truth has truly changed my life.” Here, Olender is finally letting herself feel everything all at once, no matter how uncomfortable or scary it can be.