JESSE COOK, Juno winning master guitarist, known for his intoxicating fusion of world music, has traveled the globe looking for sounds that resonate with him. His desire to take people to places they have not been drives him to find a common ground where different music traditions from around the world can come together. A special place where modern sounds can mix with ancient timbres. A mix that comes together perfectly in the wildly popular “Double Dutch”, “To the Horizon” and title track “Beyond Borders”, along with the nine other tracks that comprise Jesse’s latest album “Beyond Borders”.
“Beyond Borders” came about as a result of Jesse’s observation of the human condition coupled with his heartfelt determination to be no part of a world divided by borders created by ourselves or others that exploits our differences rather than celebrating them. He believes strongly that humanity, artistry, joy, and love don’t stop at some line on the map and that If music is the universal language, maybe there is something it can teach us. Cook also helps foster this spirit of cultural exploration visually through his photography on Instagram as well his popular weekly video releases on his YouTube channel and through Facebook.
JESSE COOK was born in Paris, to Canadian parents. The family moved to southern France at a time when Manitas de Plata was popular. His albums sparked Jesse’s interest in the sound of flamenco guitar. Back in Canada he started Guitar lessons with a teacher who played flamenco. Between this and visits with his dad back in France, next door to Nicolas Reyes of the Gipsy Kings, the hook was set. Exposure to Paco de Lucia, Al Di Meola and John McLaughlin’s “Friday Night in San Francisco” cast the die with finality. Jesse was captivated by the sheer virtuosity and freedom, that people could play whatever they wanted, creating in that space between jazz and flamenco. Thus, the musical journey of the century began and the living legend that is JESSE COOK was born.
On his albums, and in concert, Cook explores the roots of flamenco, and it’s many offshoots, from India to Spain, on to Cuba and Latin America. Along the way, he developed his signature synthesis of world music. He has released ten genre-defying albums, garnering eleven Juno nominations and one win, for “Free Fall” in the World Music and Instrumental categories (2001).
As JESSE COOK reflects back on his journey so far he concludes, “Music has a way of touching your soul, and every tradition on earth has its own way of doing that. When we venture beyond our cultural and geographic borders, we can gain the whole world.”
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