is this the best guitar ever

im completely enamered with the album by 3 of the greatest guitarists ever,friday night in san francisco,
john mclaughlin & al dimeola & paco de lucia,is this the best accoustic guitar album or what,got a better favorite?
I had it a long time ago, but lost it somewhere. I just bought it again a few months ago.
I think that my Dad has that disc. I guess i need to borrow it : ) Sean
I saw these guys in concert, early 80's, in San Juan. Fantastic performance! First each came out and did a solo piece, then they each paired with the others for duets, and finally all three onstage at the same time. The only regret that I can remember was that the whole show seemed too short for me!
Check out their album "Passion, FIre & Grace"...
I recently found a near mint LP of this in a thrift. A very fine performance indeed. I am envious of the folks that got to see them in person.
Great album, the follow up, recorded in the studio, "Passion, Grace and Fire", doesn't measure up but is more of the same. For some other nicely recorded modern guitar try Larry Coryell and Philip Catherine's "Twin House" on Electra. Most of it is live in the studio with some later sweetening during mixdown. The domestic LP is quite good. The German pressing better yet. Oh, btw, there is a CBS half-speed mastered version of "Friday Night....", don't waste your money, as with many of these, it actually sounds more wirey and less dimensional than the standard Columbia pressing.
I saw this group twice in the early/mid 80s. The first was an amazing display of guitar pyrotechnics that was strangely uninvolving. The second time John McLaughlin was replaced by Steve Morse of Dixie Dregs fame. He was clearly the technical equal of his compatriots but he communicated such joy in his playing that he made the others appear like cardboard cutouts (albeit ones that could play at the speed of light). That was one my first lessons on the distinction between mere technical mastery and complete musicianship.
I was not moved by the SACD and gave it to a friend.
I love that recording and saw them live in the mid 90's in Santiago, Chile.
Passion,Grace&Fire is just as good though different. It is a digital studio recording.Try to find Japanese LP of the " Friday Night..." and Japanese Direct Stream Digital red label Master Sound CD of the " Passion...". There is also DSD CD of the " Friday Night...". On Ebay you can usually find entire concerts on VHS tape or even DVD. The concert in Germany is unbelievable, especially the last hour of it. Of course, don't expect very good quality of video and audio. John McLaughlin and Paco De Lucia are the most accomplished guitarists this f. world has ever seen and heard. Al Di Meola is great too, that's why they invited him.
Hey guys, if you liked Friday nigth in Sn Francisco I bet you'll like "Live in America", with Paco de Lucia and his sextet, a great album as well:

This cd shows what an amazing virtuoso guitarrist De Lucia is. Highly recommended!

Happy listening.
i will get live in america,paco is truly amazing.
After reading this thread I actually went out and got it. Quite amazing! Thanks Bigjoe for a great cd recommendation. Do they have a dvd so that I can actually watch them perform? Looked for it but had no luck.
audire ,i dont think they do but i also would love to see them, i saw al demiola before & he was amazing, guy plays the guitar like a machine gun.

Thanks for the lead. I shall go look for it.
That LP was recorded during a US tour that followed a European tour by the original trio which included Larry Coryell. When they went to the US DiMiola replaced Coryell. I finally managed to find a DVD of a European performance and it's wonderful & I find it superior to the LP performance.

The LP is fun the first time, but doesn't hold up to repeated listens in my opinion. Hot licks -- and those are some super hot ones -- are more superficial, like really thick and really sweet icing on a cake that's pretty small and not that great.

Chet Atkins, who was known to never have a bad word to say about another guitarist, when asked about Al DiMiola reportedly said, "All dressed up with no where to go." His speed and accuracy are phenomenal, but there's an emotional center that's just missing.

Again, this is very subjective and I apologize in advance if I've angered any Al fans.
I agree with you, Midwestcoast, about "Friday Night...". The playing amazes the listener the first time, and quickly gets tiresome after that because of its lack of soul. Kind of like a fireworks display that goes on too long.

What's the title of the DVD of the European performance with Larry Coryell?
I'm an Al fan, but I absolutely agree with you. He is talented, but I've never heard him play with emotion. And his compositions -- although maybe complex has no relation for to the listener.

Proof that virtuosity is not a substitute for music.

And I won't even mention the worst guitarist of all yngvey malmsteen (or however you spell it). What a joke that guy is... but he's fast lol
McLaughlin, De Lucia & Coryell DVD is called "Meeting of the Spirits" about an hour long. It's a "Region 0" DVD & has about 20 various company names all over it making it impossible to tell just who put it out. The front cover was assembled by someone who thought it would look pretty but obviously not a guitarist as 3 matching Martin-looking steel string acoustics fram individual pics of John and Larry playing big hollow-body jazz electrics.

The performance is from Spain I believe and is really lovely and the quality is OK. I found it on eBay where I bet a search under "mclaughlin coryell" for DVDs would find it.

Coryell doesn't have the speed or precision of Dimeola, but he's at the same level as the other two players and has an emotional core that makes for some really lovely moments. The other guys have a good night too and the audience is very appreciative as well. If I had a DVD burner I'd burn you a copy.
I suggest getting an album called ''Touchstone'' featuring Paco de Lucia, John Mclaughlin, Alan White and Chick Corea among's simply breath taking !!!

foxtrot, i have this album & i agree, its definatly one of my favorites.

It's good, but. It's kind of an exercise in speed up and down the scale. I get bored after awhile