Leburn Maddox Interview “For me, Blues, Funk, Soul, Reggae, Jazz and Rock & Roll are all different dialects of the same language”

Lead guitarist for Atlantic Records, James Brown , George Clinton among others, Master of  Blues, Rhythm`n Blues, Rock, Funk, Reggae & Jenglee… a real pleasure to enjoy which will not stop you dancing. One of the best artists with which I have had the honour to work with. Paco San Juan

This is awesome Philadelphia artist Leburn Maddox‘s calling card for his Spanish audience. Words like these cannot be heard every day. Moreover, we can confirm that his music is wonderful.

Though we cannot classify his work in just one genre, I do not think this is no drawback, on the contrary; he combines amazingly black music such as blues, soul, funk or reggae.

He visits us in Sevilla, Sala Fanatic and Sala Cisman on the 20th and 22th respectively. Before this, he is in our country. From the 10th of this month, we can enjoy his Music in Madrid, León, Navarra, and the Basque Country. (Tour Dates)

Needless to say it will be one of those concerts you cannot miss. If you still have doubts, we prepared an interview with this artist, so that you can know him better:

8pistas: It all began in the 70´s when you were one of the lead guitarists for Atlantic Records. After so much time, what are your fondest memories of that era?

Leburn Maddox: Yeah.. My fondest memories of that time was walking onto the big stages for the first time. To feel the energy of 15,000 people was an amazing feeling. I still get this feeling at every show I do. Also having the opportunity to meet great artist such as Marvin Gaye, Chaka Khan, Lionel Richie and so many others was fantastic. Those that I named were really mind hearted people.

How come you are the type of artist who has not released a great number of studio albums?

I became disillusioned with the music industry. Seemed the industry wanted marketable products instead of passionately talented artists who have their hearts to the audience. So I enjoyed a quiet life with my wife and children. I now have chosen to once again surrender to the spirit of music. I will give what she demands of me and what my audiences want. I never stopped writing music so I have many songs that I want my fans to be able to take with them so I will be going into the studio with a brilliant team of master musicians to start producing superior recordings for the album.

Over the course of your music career you have worked with impressive artists like Mr John Lee Hooker, Mr Albert Collins, Jeff Healy, Chaka Khan, Patti LaBelle, Kool & the Gang, Bill Withers, Joss Stone, Javier Vargas, Oli Brown, Raimundo Amador… With whom would you play again, even if it was for free, taking into account the flow of knowledge artists experience on these encounters?

Who would I love to make music with again? Ha ha! That’s a good question. I’ve made music with so many talented people that its hard to choose. I can fantasise about having John Lee Hooker, Ray Charles, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Chaka Khan, Joss Stone, No. No I can’t answer this question. I’d be adding names forever if I answered your question. Sorry 🙂

Is there anyone you would really love to play with for the first time?

I’ve recently worked with Antonio Serrano and fell deeply in love with his beautiful harmonica. And it’s always fun to abuse guitars with Raimundo Amador.  And my Espanyole band the Blast is great.

Some critics have defined your music as electric, fusing styles, with no definite style. It is true the roots of your music is the Blues, however you don’t close your music to Funk, Soul or Reggae. ¿How do you describe your own music?

Being born into Black American Culture, my earliest musical memories were  of Mom’s Gospel music on the radio and my Father’s Blues and Jazz records. Discovering the mind blowing artistry of Jimi Hendrix and the powerful Funk of James Brown and even the hypnotic Reggae of Bob Marley has created my style. For me, Blues, Funk, Soul, Reggae, Jazz and Rock & Roll are all different dialects of the same language. They all sound like love to me

After this time on the road and so many things you have lived, so many hotel rooms, you have been to every continent ¿Are you not tired of this kind of life?

Jimi Hendrix said it in his song Stone Free. “Every day of the week I’m in a different city.”  But.. As a child I read voraciously about explorers who went to distant lands and immersed themselves in the cultures of the people they encountered. I also was curious to see James Bond’s travels. First he’s in London, then he’s in Switzerland or Paris or Brasil. Hotel rooms are a great place to sleep in. The adventure for me is to sit walk into a town Center or a restaurant and try to communicate in with people despite the language barriers. I accept and embrace my life making people around the world happy with my music.

About ten shows in Spain before the end of the year. It seems you like this country. ¿What does the Spanish audience give you every time you play here?

I find that the audiences in Espania are very attentive and appreciative. If they love music I love them so it’s ultimately a love story. And the musicians I get to work with are incredibly talented, passionate and fun people to be with.

Tell us something about the band that will be playing with you on this Spanish tour…

I constantly meet and collaborate with top artists in many countries but when in Espania I usually connect with The Blast. They are truly world class musicians and quality human beings. Humberto on guitar, Bigpapa Giron rocks the Hammond organ, Manuelo, on drums and Juanjo of Matheus on bass. They make me proud onstage and soon in the studio while recording.

A whole life dedicated to what you really love and to improve the art of communicate emotions on a guitar. Experiences, collaborations, joy, art and precious savoir faire. We will see all of this in your concerts. We look forward to the day to come.


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