“In a world of blues guitar pretenders, Coco Montoya is the real McCoy. He exudes power and authenticity. Be prepared to get scorched by the real thing.” –Billboard
“Coco Montoya sings and plays with passionate abandon.” –The Boston Globe
Legendary blues-rock guitarist and vocalist Coco Montoya will celebrate the release of his new Alligator Records album, Coming In Hot, with a live performance on Saturday, September 28, 2019 at The Commonwealth Room in Salt Lake City. Taught by the “Master of the Telecaster,” Albert Collins, and schooled by a decade on the road with John Mayall, Montoya has a hard-edged sound and style all his own. He delivers instantly memorable songs, powered by his forceful, melodic guitar playing and passionate vocals. Performance information is as follows:
Coming In Hot features 11 songs by writers including Montoya and Dave Steen, Tom Hambridge and Richard Fleming, Warren Haynes, Frankie Miller, Jeff Paris, and Albert Collins. The tracks range from blistering, hard-rocking blues to potent shuffles to fervent, moving ballads. Montoya delivers each song with uncompromising, dynamic energy. His unpredictable guitar playing and smoking, soulful vocals are inspired by a backing band featuring renowned musicians including bassists Bob Glaub (Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Jerry Lee Lewis) and Mike Mennell (Jimmy Buffett, John Fogerty), keyboardist Mike Finnigan (Jimi Hendrix, Etta James, Taj Mahal), rhythm guitarists Billy Watts (Eric Burdon) and Johnny Lee Schell (Bonnie Raitt), and Tony Braunagel (who produced the album) on drums.
Montoya is revered for his ability to move from subtly melodic guitar playing to slash-and-burn pyrotechnics. Equally forceful are his deep, soul-baring vocals. Years of constant touring, playing unforgettable shows at clubs, concert halls and festivals, have earned him his position at the top of the contemporary blues world. And it all started with a chance meeting in the mid-1970s with legendary bluesman Albert Collins, who offered Montoya a spot in his band, where he stayed for the next five years. Coco was initially hired as Collins’ drummer and later—with Albert mentoring him on the guitar—became the band’s rhythm guitarist. A few years after leaving Collins’ band, British blues star John Mayall heard Coco jamming onstage and was so impressed that he hired him for the newly reformed Bluesbreakers.
When Montoya launched his solo career in 1993, he already had an instantly recognizable burning-hot sound and style all his own. His debut album solidified his stature as the blues’ newest rising star. Over the course of his nine previous solo albums, Montoya has consistently delivered piping hot blues, rock and soul. His new album (his fifth for Alligator), Coming In Hot, is another instant classic. Montoya’s fiery, melodic guitar playing and passionate vocals fuel one memorable song after another. Guitar Player says Montoya plays “stunning, powerhouse blues with a searing tone, emotional soloing, and energetic, unforced vocals.”
In 2000, Coco’s Alligator debut, Suspicion, quickly became the best-selling album of his career, earning regular radio airplay on over 120 stations nationwide. After two more highly successful and massively popular Alligator releases—2002’s Can’t Look Back and 2007’s Dirty Deal—Montoya signed with Ruf Records, cutting both a live and a studio album. Returning to Alligator with 2017’s Hard Truth, Montoya delivered another fan and critical favorite.
Now, with Coming In Hot, Coco Montoya again turns the burners to high and cooks from start to finish. Still an indefatigable road warrior, Montoya continues to tour virtually nonstop, bringing audiences to their feet from New York to New Orleans to Chicago to San Francisco. Across the globe, he’s performed in countries including Australia, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Norway, England, Brazil, Argentina, Spain, Mexico, Ecuador, Italy, Poland, Russia, the Czech Republic and Canada. According to Living Blues , “Montoya is a show-stopper…heartfelt singing and merciless guitar with a wicked icy burn…he swings like a jazz man and stings like the Iceman, Albert Collins. He is one of the truly gifted blues artists of his generation.”
Check out The Commonwealth Room event here: