“It’s all about feelings, not just schooling, and theory, and notes – if you can connect with personal heart-felt issues and convey that through the writing and through the playing, and having other people connect with it – it’s the greatest thing that can happen!” – Al Di Meola explained the impact that his art has on millions around the world in an interview on Jazz FM.
Another special feature of his expression is making any kind of music his own. As he described it: “All through my life I’m this contemporary-minded fusion player and writer. I’m not a traditional jazz or flamenco person, but the elements of those had made my music unique. I’m not a traditional rock guy, I’m not a traditional jazz guy, I’m not a traditional anything! I’ve taken bits and pieces of these influences and I’ve formed a persona, which is me.”
One of the big influences on his music is the art of Astor Piazzolla: “From him I have learned that music must appeal to the brain intellectually and also make my heart cry. When it has a sentimental value and is a musical challenge, it comes close to really achieving probably the best combination! That’s where a lot of jazz people really fail, playing for themselves.”
Al Di Meola was cited by Prince as one of the musicians who made him want to play. “It’s quite a pleasant surprise and a great honor to hear that coming from someone who did some monumental work.” – Al Di Meola said in this Jazz FM interview.
He also shared a little secret of his writing – composing while focusing on what’s in TV: “Inspiration sometimes comes from watching the TV, focusing not on the guitar, but on the television. Then something unusual comes out that might not have come if I was focusing on music.”
Having a child in his late 50s has also taught him a lesson: “It’s a new beginning, but it is also scaring because of the life span. My wife, who is a most wonderful person, told me: “How do we know that I’ll be here tomorrow?” As we don’t know, we do our best every day.” – Al Di Meola shared his belief in the interview that you can listen to using the “Audio” button.