Review | Songlines

Pepito y Paquito

Rating: ★★★★

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Album and Artist Details


Paco de Lucía & Pepe de Lucía




Many albums are ballyhooed for their ‘historic’ significance. Most are truly significant only as gap-fillers on the shelves of completist collectors. That’s not the case with Pepito y Paquito, a two-LP/CD of unpublished recordings featuring budding flamenco musicians and brothers, singer Pepe and guitarist Paco de Lucía, when the boys were 13 and 11 years old, respectively. During 1959 and 60, a family friend with a Grundig TK46 tape recorder made a series of recordings at Paco and Pepe’s home. The tapes disappeared in 1967, but were found in 2022. A restoration using AI brought the rough recordings up to commercially viable standards. In addition to the first sound recordings of the prodigious brothers – ‘Bulerías Niño Ricardo’, a solo guitar showcase named for one of Paco’s heroes, and ‘Me Falta la Resistencia’, a tango that highlight’s Pepe’s extraordinary vocal power – the collection covers multiple flamenco song types ranging from polo (‘Que el Viente se la Llevó’) and soleá (‘Al Pilarico por Agua’) to seguiriyas (‘Romance de Juan Osuna’) and fandango (‘Voy a Tener Que Dejarte’). Pepito y Paquito provides extraordinary insight into the development of modern flamenco, which, particularly in Paco’s hands, transformed the Spanish song form and the late guitarist into global sensations.

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