For many people, Barcelona is, after Andalusia and Madrid, the third great flamenco capital in Spain. This city which is used to welcoming hundreds of thousands of immigrants from the south of the peninsula, has been the nerve centre for the evolution of this Andalusian genre since the beginning of the twentieth century, characterised by the high standard of its shows and unorthodox tendencies, which is why it has been at the forefront of new movements like Catalan rumba and new flamenco.

Above all, Barcelona is a capital city that boasts a large number of demanding fans that, in many cases, have found within the walls of Tarantos, a place to enjoy the best flamenco that can be heard in this country. A venue chosen by many artists to initiate or consolidate their career.

Pure and heterodox

In the autumn of 1963, a year after the release of the Francisco Robira Beleta film of the same name, the tablao Los Tarantos opened on Plaça Reial, a venue destined to become an indispensable point of reference for flamenco in Barcelona. Uniquely decorated with traditional touches, this Barcelona venue soon became the meeting place for a very mixed crowd, where people from world of flamenco mingled with intellectuals, music lovers, tourists, famous people passing through the city. .. The club received an important boost following the closure of the neighbouring club Jamboree in 1968, bringing a considerable part of the clientele from the jazz cellar to Los Tarantos. Within a few years, this tablao became one of the must-see places in Barcelona by night. The success of the venue was largely thanks to the quality of the artists playing there.

From the outset, the managers of Los Tarantos clearly chose the best flamenco stars of the moment to go on stage. With an open mind to all trends within the genre, from the novel to the most orthodox, the club managers programmed performers such as the flamenco dancers Vicente Escudero, Antonio Gades, Maria Marquez, Jose de la Vega and La Tolea; the guitarists Andrés Batista, Emilio de Diego, Pepe Pubill or Selva of Cadiz, and the singers Fosforito, Jarrito, El Peti, El Brujo and Pepe Cortes. It was a cast that made the place famous in the rest of Spain and partly abroad, an essential focal point for all lovers of flamenco who lived in or were visiting the city of Barcelona.

During the '70s the flamenco club’s good reputation was consolidated with the addition of Maruja Garrido, who practically became the resident singer and dancer of Los Tarantos.  The artist’s fame attracted people like Dali who considered her to be one of his muses and participated in the making of a record, released in 1983, recorded live at the venue. At that time, Maruja Garrido gave an opportunity to people such as the guitarist Manzanita, a main figure of flamenco and Catalan rumba of the seventies and eighties. In 1974, a reporter, for the Madrid newspaper ABC remarked on the alternative ambience of the venue and said the following of Los Tarantos: "It's unbelievable that in Barcelona, so far from Andalusia, so close to the Pyrenees (. ..) such a pure tablao bar exists. "

Maruja Garrido continued to lead The Tarantos sessions during the 80s, when Catalan flamenco greats such as guitarist Rafael Cansares became known. The flamenco bar then served as a school for many artists who have gone on to become very important figures of the Andalusian genre in Barcelona. Nevertheless, the difficult conditions in the Ciutat Vella district pushed the venue into steady decline. Extensive renovations became necessary.

Flamenco & Co: new life

On October the 3rd, 1993 the tablao Los Tarantos reopened after full architectural renovations which, while respecting the original essence of the place, lent it a new infrastructure and connected it to the neighbouring Jamboree. The Mas i Mas group, which had taken over the historic jazz cellar just a few months earlier, was responsible for the renovation of the historical venue. With the initial help of the producer Posto Nove, Mas i Mas opted for combining traditional flamenco sessions with a line up of ambitious acts with well-established and new flamenco artists and, as a novelty, world music figures and singer-songwriters. Among the first artists who jumped on the new stage at Los Tarantos were Parrita,  Sorderita, Toumami Diabate and a very young Duquende.

In 1994, many so-called new flamenco artists, like Duquende, José Manuel Cañizares, Miguel Poveda, Montse Cortés, José el Francés, Rafael Riqueni or Monica Fernandez were the protagonists of some of the most successful meetings that season, including a performance by Joseph Menese, a flamenco legend.

In 1995, the singer Pedro Guerra from the Canary Islands presented his first album in Los Tarantos with a historic turn out, as did his compatriot Rosana Arbelo the following year. Between 1995 and 1996 Barcelona fans were able to discover Cuban music personalities at the tablao and that were still quite unknown: Omara Portuondo and Compay Segundo. As far as pure flamenco artists are concerned, the venue on Placa Reial hosted sets by Moraíto Chico, Pepe Habichuela, Enrique de Melchor, Paco Cepero, Tomasito, Pedro Javier Gonzalez, Rancapino, Eva la Yerbabuena and the rising star: Niña Pastori.

During 1997 and 1998 the venue showed clear support for singer-songwriters including artists such as Marc Parrot, Roger Mas, Quintin Cabrera, Jorge Drexler, Tontxu, Joan Isaac or the Argentinian Litto Nebbia. It did this without neglecting flamenco, with figures such as Sordera or Miguel de la Tolea.

In recent years, the Mas i Mas group has established regular flamenco sessions, to the point of giving almost all the limelight to toque, cante y baile (flamenco guitar playing, singing and dancing). Nowadays, you can see a series of cuadros (flamenco troupes) made up of our best, local emerging flamenco artists.



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  • Moog Electronic Dancing Club Barcelona
  • Tarantos - Espectacles Flamenco Barcelona
  • Tarantos Club - Sessions de Indie, Pop, Rock Barcelona
  • Jamboree Dance Club Barcelona
  • Fundació Mas i Mas - Concerts de música clàssica a Barcelona
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