San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Passionate. Sophisticated. Powerful. Latin jazz, flamenco-samba, Afro Cuban grooves and more. Acclaimed guitarist, vocalist, composer and recording artist Rolando Morales leads his stellar band which features musicians who played with Sheila E., Airto, Dizzy Gillespie, Tower of Power, Spearhead, Rubén Blades and Carlos Santana. This band is guaranteed to make your event memorable and exciting.
Rolando, living in the San Francisco Bay Area, has performed throughout Spain, England, Italy, Ireland, Mexico and Hawaii. His diverse talents span the musical spectrum. On a given night, you might hear him performing classical or flamenco-inspired instrumentals, to hard-swinging Latin-jazz; from original sambas to passionately sung boleros; from driving Cuban grooves to Latin rhythms with a rock or funk edge.
He was equally comfortable performing with his full band before thousands at KKSF concerts, with his Quintet before 12,000 enthusiastic fans at the Stern Grove Festival in San Francisco, the Greater Hartford Festival of Jazz in Connecticut, and as a soloist for shows as small and intimate as a party of three, of whom one was special guest Demi Moore.
He and his personnel are world-class pros. He uses top-of-the-line equipment to bring out the best possible sound from his musicians. As for versatility, he can help you decide what works best for your event, from solo to the full band. He is available for parties, festivals, conventions, concerts and recording dates. When you want the best, ask for Rolando.
“Fueled by the influence of flamenco modernists such as Paco de Lucia and Chick Corea, Morales is a rapid-fire instrumentalist who is at the peak of his technique and has something to say melodically.”
— Jesse Chuy Varela, East Bay Express, Critic’s Choice
"Morales turned his guitar into a relentless explorer of the rhythms and melodies of the Americas. When he and his band finished playing, fans rushed to buy his CDs, while others lined up and chanted for his autograph.”
Jeff Rivers, Hartford Courant reviewing Rolando’s appearance
at the Greater Hartford Festival of Jazz in Connecticut.
When Rolando was eight years old, he would run home from school every day to practice on his guitar.
Rolando was born in East Los Angeles, California to Armando, also from East Los Angeles, and Rebecca from El Paso, Texas. His grandparents on both sides were from northern Mexico. Rolando's father, a renowned leader in the Chicano political movement, was his first guitar instructor. He taught him fundamental classical techniques as well as instilled a keen political consciousness and an intense work ethic. His mother, a vivacious, youthful spirit to this day, loved all forms of music and sang around the house. This exposed him to everything from Mexican rancheras to June Christie; from Antonio Carlos Jobim and Segovia to '60's Protest songs; and from Ennio Morricone to John Barry. Pull all this together and you've got one of the most eclectic, educated, driven and unique musicians around.
Rolando is largely self-taught. Blessed with great ears and a natural sense of rhythm, most of what he learned came from performing in diverse bands while growing up and in college, as well as from playing with flamenco pros in mesones in Spain. Rolando has performed throughout Spain, England, Italy, Ireland, Mexico, and Hawaii. In Los Angeles, he largely played electric guitars. Just out of college, he played with a 9 piece casual band comprised of members who backed such stars as Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, and Poncho Sanchez.
After moving to San Francisco to attend law school, he still found time to dabble in music. He played for a few years with the local Latin band Los Compas. He then returned to his passion, the acoustic nylon-stringed guitar, and co-founded the very popular band Passion and Grace in 1991 with Carlos Godinez. Together they expanded the capabilities of blending Latin jazz with flamenco, classical, Brazilian and pop influences with guitar and voice. While working a law-oriented job with the City and County of San Francisco, Rolando accepted an offer to tour Hawaii and has hardly looked back since. Passion and Grace became hugely successful in Hawaii and the Bay Area.
After disbanding, Rolando continued to perform dividing his time equally between the Bay Area and Hawaii for a couple more years playing as a soloist and leading variously sized ensembles. He moved to Oakland and concentrated on developing his band and repertoire. He now plays with world-class musicians who have backed up such luminaries as Airto, Flora Purim, Steve Winwood, Tower of Power, Spearhead, Ruben Blades, Carlos Santana, Dizzy Gillespie and many others.
Rolando Morales has just released his latest CD entitled Rolando, Y Que?! Just weeks out of the gate, it was embraced by radio stations from Alaska to New York and its popularity continues to expand. With his new album Rolando is introducing a daring, sophisticated new sound that fills the void created by so many industry-manufactured pop bands and indistinguishable "smooth jazz" sounds. Rolando now stands poised to attract a national and international audience. Here is an artist who provides a passion, power and authenticity that is greatly needed.
When & Where
Biscuits And Blues
Biscuits and Blues has been voted the Bay Area's & the Nation's #1 blues nightclub by the Blues Foundation and the Bay Area Blues Society. It is San Francisco's premier club to see great live Blues music in an intimate setting, where everyone gets a front row seat!
Biscuits and Blues offers a full service restaurant and premium bar. We feature savory award-winning Southern cuisine California wines, micro-brews, and specialty cocktails - all at reasonable prices that please our tourist visitors and loyal Bay Area clientele.