It is hardly a surprise that his two latest albums, "Freewheelin" and "Mojo Zone", are often found in music stores next to Chet Atkins and Eric Clapton on the "guitar hero" shelf.
Showcasing a mighty sounding guitar that manages to be at the same time refined and explosive, the two Electro-Fi releases have propelled Enrico Crivellaro into the upper echelons of blues-and-beyond guitar royalty.
The definition of Guitar Hero might not be in harmony with Enrico's unassuming nature and with his genuine and humble devotion to music, but it serves to thoroughly depict the status of a guitarist who has earned international fame, and who is now considered to be one of the most influential of his generation, thanks to a style that bridges Blues with Jazz and American Roots Music.
Among dozens of rave reviews of "Freewheelin" and "Mojo Zone", it might as well be Downbeat's 4-star lead review--which is in itself every musician's aspiration--the one that sums it all up. The world's most prestigious Jazz and Blues magazine, Downbeat notes how "inspiration, hypnotic feeling and emotional delicacy" permeates "the gold standard for blues instrumental albums" and predicts that Enrico's "stellar technique" will allow him to "conquer blues America".
Born in Padova, Italy, but later relocating to Los Angeles, and now literally living in a suitcase and taking his music all around the world, Enrico Crivellaro has been able to prove that passion and talent can transcend political and cultural borders.
In his quest to refine a guitar style that he developed in his teen years, Enrico flew to Connecticut to study with blues masters of the caliber of Ronnie Earl, Duke Robillard, Roy Bookbinder and Kenny Neal at the National Guitar Workshop.
Some years later, while a student at the University of California, he embarked on a journey to the very essence of American music thanks to the courses taught by the director of the Jazz Department, guitar legend Kenny Burrell. Learning jazz from one of the men who invented it was a life-changing experience, which could only reinforce his already developed mindset of digging deeper and looking far beyond notes, scales, chords, where music becomes meaningful.
He was always aware that books and lectures do not make a musician. After all, music is akin to an oral tradition, which is passed on from a generation to the next. The road and some sleazy club at 2am is where it's at, where everything comes together, where those notes finally make sense, where the old cats show how it's done. And that's exactly where Enrico could be found most of the time--whether in California, in Mississippi or in Chicago.
He has learned his trade, in fact, the old way--by playing, literally, thousands of gigs everywhere, with some of the best artists in the contemporary blues scene. His touring, gigging and recording credits include an impressive array of internationally renowned artists, among them James Harman, Lester Butler of the Red Devils, Canadian icon Jeff Healey, Janiva Magness, Finis Tasby, Brian Templeton, Bruce Katz, the Royal Crown Revue (the band from "The Mask" movie), and legendary harmonica player Lee Oskar of WAR fame.
Enrico's strength lies in his extraordinary versatility in different musical genres, which has allowed him to build an extraordinary experience playing with bands and artists of all extractions--soul jazz, country, funk and even zydeco--while keeping his playing firmly rooted in the blues language.
His reputation is growing all over the world as he tours regularly from the Americas to Europe, to Australia, to Asia and even Polynesia, playing the most renowned clubs and festivals (among them: Livid Festival, Brisbane, Australia; 2000 Paralympics Games, Sydney, Australia; Philips Dubai International Jazz Festival, Dubai, UAE; Belgium Rhythm'n'Blues Festival; Lucerne Blues Festival, Switzerland; Southside Shuffle, Toronto, Canada; Montreal International Jazz Festival, Canada; Calgary International Blues Festival, Canada: Boston Blues Festival; Sacramento Heritage Festival, California; Tucson Blues Festival, Arizona; Moulin Blues Festival, Holland; Universal Blues Festival, Singapore; Manly Jazz Festival, Australia; and many, many more!) and having often shared the bill with the likes of John Lee Hooker, B.B.King, Mose Allison, and so forth.
With good ears for good music, Enrico makes a valued producer. Besides his own albums, he has produced the fantastic "Right On Time" by Singaporean virtuoso Paul Ponnudorai, by many hailed as one of the best-sounding and most soulful solo guitar/vocals records ever made.
Signed by the excellent Canadian-US label Electro-Fi Records in 2002, Enrico has debuted with a well-arranged CD, "Key To My Kingdom". His affiliation with Electro-Fi has opened the way to several opportunities--in fact Enrico has co-produced Finis Tasby's 2005 release "What My Blues Are All About" and has appeared at the Lucerne Blues Festival in 2003 with label-mate, the late great Mel Brown and his band, which then comprised Bob Stroger and Willie "Big Eyes" Smith of the Muddy Waters Band.
"Mojo Zone" is a 2009 Electro-Fi release which features 70 minutes of genre expanding blues guitar instrumentals, and the very recent "Freewheelin" goes even further, showcasing the incredible sonic range of one of the most gifted young guitarists working on the blues scene today.