The Nevada County Composers Cooperative presents their winter 2011 Meet The Composer featuring Ivan Najera.
Many people are well acquainted with one side of Najera, for he has performed continuously at many of the fine eateries in the area, playing a lighter side of his and popular music. However, on Friday, Ecuadorian-born guitarist Najera presents an explosive show of feelings and skill expressed through his guitar and vocal compositions, rich in cultural diversity encompassing classical, traditional Spanish and Flamenco, Brazilian, tropical, Andean and contemporary styles. He was inspired by musicians such as Paco de Lucia, Bach, Tarrega, Sergio Mendez, Agustin Barrios and Atahualpa Yupanki.
Born to a musical family in Quito, Ecuador, he won the second grand prize in a National Star Search Competition in Quito at the age of 10. At 14, he attended the National Conservatory in Quito, studying guitar and piano, and later joined a musical TV show, appearing weekly for two years. At the age of 22, Ivan moved to California, earned a degree in digital electronics with an emphasis in television, and began performing and recording his own compositions. His musical compositions have been quoted as "some of the most accomplished and innovative guitar works of recent times" (of Tower of Records Magazine "Pulse Latino," March 2000 edition). Najera has shared stages with Jose Feliciano, Julio Iglesias, Enrique Coria, Mary Youngblood and many other international stars. For the past 10 years Najera has produced the well-acclaimed "Guitar Extravaganza" shows.
He currently has four albums released: "Jungle" and "On Top Of The Rain," plus "Devotion" and "Malaguena" recorded with Swiss guitarist Tony Unger. Najera can also be heard as featured guest artist on Christine Bonner's CD releases, "Sand Castles" and "Companeros," as well as on Paul Corbin's CD release, "I'll Always Be Near You." His award-winning album "Devotion," produced with Tony Unger, was nominated as a winner of "The Undiscovered" (April 1999 issue), a section of Guitar Nine Magazine.
The Nevada County Composers Cooperative's mission is to present their own work as well as the work of both local and regional Northern California contemporary composers.
Attending this event, you might think that you were stepping back in history when much of the music of the day was presented at small intimate salon gatherings.