WHAT CRITIQUES HAVE SAID ABOUT JUST YOUR FOOL
"Blues for the present. Respecting traditions by innovators such as Little Walter and following that example, continuing to push and expand the boundaries of possibility for the blues idiom, harmonicist, vocalist Carlos del Junco and his band establish with Just Your Fool their place in the vanguard of contemporary blues musicians. Check it out."
David Bernard of CKLN - Blue Soul
"Harmonica virtuoso Carlos del Junco takes his instrument to new heights on this set of blues standards and originals." Words and Music Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers Canada (SOCAN) "Whatever the genre in music, if you're the best, let's hear it!. When del Junco puts that harmonica to his mouth, you know there are few harmonica players anywhere past or present that can drag blues around like this gifted young man can."
Eleanor Koldofsky The Listening Post
"It might seem pretty hard to make a harmonica sound sophisticated but del Junco pulls it off...del Junco has mapped out a fine discourse on blues harmonica playing and his handling of the harp leaves one breathless. This isn't some cheapened modern-day blues rip-off, this is the low-down, my-dog-just-died-and-my-house-burned-to-the-ground type of blues that the true Delta masters would smile upon."
Ron Rogers RPM Weekly
1997 - 2009 Harmonica Player of the Year - SEVEN times out of the Canadian Maple Blues Award's TWELVE year history
2005 "Best Blues" Award- NOW Magazine, Toronto, ON
1998 JUNO NOMINATION for BIG BOY cd
1996 Blues Musician of the Year Award&Jazz Report Magazine
1993 Hohner World Harmonica Championship – Trossingen, Germany Two Gold Medals in both diatonic blues and diatonic jazz
Born in Havana, Cuba, del Junco (loosely translated "of the reeds") immigrated with his family at the age of one. He bent his first note on a harmonica when he was fourteen, making his debut with his high school math teacher at a student talent night. In his early 20's del Junco was immersed in a visual arts career; he graduated with honours from a four year program, majoring in sculpture at the Ontario College of Art. Sculpture has definitely had an influence on his outlook on music: "Music is just a different way of creating textures and shapes."
Carlos is certainly not your straight ahead blues harmonica player. Carlos' influences are far and wide and can quickly stray from a straight ahead blues groove into more adventurous roots related territory which may include, jazzy, Latin, New Orleans second line grooves, or ska. He will occasionally take a blues standard and flip it upside down to breath new life into it. He has recorded with Bruce Cockburn, Kim Mitchell, Oliver Schroer, Zappacosta, and has also worked with Dutch Mason, Hoc Walsh (Downchild Blues Band) and Holly Cole.
Playing a ten hole diatonic harmonica, Carlos has developed the unique ability to play chromatically by using a recently developed "overblow" technique taught to him by jazz virtuoso Howard Levy. Overall, this approach to the diatonic harmonica, although much more difficult to achieve, is in many ways more expressive and communicative than the mechanized tone produced by the chromatic harmonica . Carlos is one of the few pioneers of this overblow method, bringing musical credibility to what has still been considered by many in the music industry - a fringe folk instrument. The sophisticated sound produced by del Junco is at once sensitive, soulful, and sexy while never forgetting the rawness inherent in blues music.
...In March/April 1995 del Junco travelled to Chicago with a Canada Council grant to study with Howard Levy. This year saw the release of of the critically acclaimed Just Your Fool a sizzling live session with Kevin Breit on guitar, Al Duffy on bass, and Geoff Arsenault on drums. It was this CD and the collaborative effort with Thom "Champagne Charlie" Roberts Big Road Blues, that won Carlos the 1996 Blues Musician Of The Year Award...
Carlos has toured Canada regularly since 1996 and tours often in Europe and the United States. He has played all the major jazz, blues, and folk festivals across Canada.