Listening to Renaud Garcia-Fons is the rediscovering of the double bass. Referred to as the Paganini of the double bass he is considered as a star among the masters of this musical instrument. Garcia-Fons was born 55 years ago in France to a Spanish family from Catalonia. He began to play at the age of five and by the age of 21 set out on a creative path as a virtuoso double bassist. Like artists such as Astor Piazzolla, Jimi Hendrix and Paco de Lucia, who expanded the boundaries of their choice musical instrument through contemplation and profound self-exploration, Garcia-Fons allowed his adventurous spirit to rise above technical limitations deciding to add a fifth string to his double bass. This addition expanded the instrument’s range, offering new options for chords and more freedom to improvise, enabling him to play melodies that are more complex and produce a sound that is almost as high as a viola. He also developed a unique pizzicato technique, hitting the strings using the bow instead of the fingers, creating a distinct sound. In solo performances, he uses various effects and loopers, incorporating repeat audio samples to form a one-man orchestra. Renaud concludes, “The joy to have an instrument more adapted to my musical dream.”
His musical dream is an all-embracing universe of sounds, and when mentioning his wide range of influences he almost apologizes since “the list is too long”: jazz, flamenco, Eastern and Mediterranean music, blues, gospel, Brazilian, Afro-Cuban and Argentinian, as well as Classical from Bach to Stravinsky. He is one of the few who adapted the Flamenco tradition to the double bass and the first bassist to receive an award from the Seville Flamenco Biennial. Emphasizing improvisation in his artistic vision, he creates an idiosyncratic and rich in style composition stating that, “I want to tell stories that we cannot express in words. To travel far, without knowing why. The music captures us we do not know where we will go. We are absorbed by something beyond ourselves, beyond our everyday emotions.”
He has 14 albums to his name as a bandleader and many more as an accompanying musician. He tours the world non-stop and contributes to many collaborations. He worked with jazz drummers like Kenny Clarke and Sam Woodyard and later worked with David Dorantes, Gerardo Núñez, Esperanza Fernández, as well as Angélique Ionatos from Greece, Dhafer Youssef from Tunisia, Huong Thanh from Vietnam and Kudsi Ergüner from Turkey. Garcia-Fons is also a prolific composer who is frequently asked to compose music for films and ballets, as well as chamber music for unique world music ensembles. Such is his composition for a string quartet that includes the Double Bass, the Northern Indian flute Bansuri, and the Riq, a small tambourine with jingles used as a traditional instrument in Arabic music.
With tranquil force and lyrical expression, Garcia-Fons is a musician with no boundaries, reaching for the rainbow. All About Jazz wrote, “He’s in a position to unite nations of music lovers.”
His ability to express deep emotion through the double bass goes beyond virtuosity. “Truth is I do not recognize myself in this flattering comparison since Paganini is generally considered the virtuoso archetype,” he says. “My essential goal in music is the research of a subtle expression, which has nothing to do with virtuosity. Technical things are just a way to access more freedom on the instrument. This helps to improvise, to interpret… What I particularly appreciate in music is the soul, the spirit, something I cannot explain.”
Renaud Garcia-Fons Double Bass
David Venitucci Accordion
Stephan Caracci Vibraphone Drums
- All festival venues offer seating chart booking by seat and row numbers.
- Wheelchair-accessible seating available for booking at the call center.
- Resident Discount for the Eilat municipality and the Central Arava regional council available only upon presentation of a valid resident ID at the ticket pick-up box-office and at admittance to the venue.
- The festival box-office in Eilat is located at the Isrotel Theater at the Royal Garden Hotel during the festival.
- The 2018 winter RSJF venues are the Isrotel Theater at the Royal Garden Hotel and Canaan Hall at the Queen of Sheba Hotel, located on Antibes Street, Eilat.
- In accordance with hotel security policy, no weapons are allowed in the festival venues.
- Please be attentive to the instructions of the Royal Garden / Queen of Sheba hotel stewards and security guards.
- Entrance with food and drink according to the policy of venue host hotel.
- To avoid the queue, please print out your tickets in advance.
- Entrance to the venue will be approximately 15 minutes prior to scheduled performance time.
- Once the show has started, late arrivals will be required to wait for a suitable time during performance to be admitted into the venue.
- The 2018 winter RSJF production reserves the right to implement all modifications and improvements as deemed necessary. Please stay tuned for update mailings from the RSJF production and Eventim booking and visit our website https://en.redseajazz.co.il/