Artist Spotlight: Al Di Meola and the Mark V

by Boogie on April 5, 2011

in Mesa Boogie Artists, Mesa Boogie Guitar Products, Photo Galleries, Tours

Al Dimeola, the Mark V and his signature Paul Reed Smith Prism Guitar

Al Di Meola, the Mark V and his signature Paul Reed Smith Prism Guitar (click to enlarge or for photo gallery)

Al Di Meola and the Mark V

Mesa/Boogie Artist Relations spent some time recently at Yoshi’s Jazz club in Oakland, California with longtime Mesa user and one of the world’s legendary guitarists, Al Di Meola. In support of his latest record release  Pursuit of Radical Rhapsody in March 2011,  Al has again taken to the road. The amp-of-choice for his latest tour is a Mark V 1×12 combo. The channels, features and tones immediately provided the flavor for the electric portion of the set and it’s all Al from there.

Al Di Meola with a Stiletto Ace Head and Stiletto Slant 4x12 in 2006

Al Di Meola with a Stiletto Ace Head and Stiletto Slant 4x12 in 2006 (click to enlarge)

Al has used and enjoyed Mesa tone in previous electric forays in recent years with his Stiletto Ace and Stiletto 4×12 cabinets. While the unmistakable British feel of the Stiletto Ace connected Al with some early Return to Forever feel and tones, he still asked about an amp that offered three distinct channels each with adjustable reverb. That request turned out to be the easy part for the Mark V to deliver. Mode and settings dialing fell in to place naturally after a brief overview of the tones available in each mode. Al was immediately pleased with the overdrive selections in Channel 2 & 3 and loved the depth of the reverb as well as being able to switch it in and out. The clean on Channel 1 was a snap to dial in and crisp with detail but full, warm and tube-round.

We were fortunate to be able to watch some of Al’s rehearsal before the show. Watching how he puts the music together and works with the exceptional musicians (who performed on his new album and tour) was amazing to watch in real time.

Al rehearsing through some changes with 2nd guitar while bass watches for details

Al rehearsing through some changes with 2nd guitar while bass watches for details (click to enlarge)

Al smiles as the band locks in the tune

Then Al cracks a smile as the band locks in the tune... (click to enlarge)

Al looks away from the written music for one of the faster runs

Played as written... Al looks away from the written music for one of the faster runs (click to enlarge)

Al lights up his Signature PRS through the Mark V in rehearsal

Al lights up his Signature PRS through the Mark V in rehearsal (click to enlarge)

Al Di Meola with the Mesa/Boogie Mark V and his Signature Paul Reed Smith Prism

Al Di Meola with the Mesa/Boogie Mark V and his Signature Paul Reed Smith Prism (click to enlarge)

To see the band play flawlessly through the details they rehearsed earlier was icing on the cake for us. The bands performance reconnected us with the diverse and rhythmically rich music for which Al is so well known.

The band continues to tour in support of the new album and is heading to Europe where dates will stretch from April through July. For more information, check out the Al Di Meola website and Tour Dates and details. Get out and see this show!

Mesa would like to extend its profound gratitude to Al Di Meola for continuing to hear and feel Mesa/Boogie products as the amplifiers that deliver his legendary tone. The tremendous artistry and influence Al continues to deliver to the guitar-playing community and the music world is true inspiration. Thank you, Al!

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Bob Janicki April 6, 2011 at 3:32 pm

I just saw Al DiMeola play at the Berk’s Jazz Festival in Reading, PA a couple weeks of ago and his show was incredible. The musicians in his band are some of the best I’ve ever heard and he is bar far the best guitarist. I love the sound he gets from his Mesa/Boogie amp with his Signature PRS. I hope you can post his settings via .pdf when you get them.

Bob

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Hallvard Granseth April 6, 2011 at 8:53 am

did you get a good look at his particular settings on the mk V ?

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Boogie Boogie April 6, 2011 at 12:41 pm

Hi Hallvard –

We are working on getting a .pdf of his settings for this post. We’ll put them up when we have them. Thanks for your interest!

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Dave amason April 6, 2011 at 6:58 am

Your Gear is so great-That all owning one piece does is make me want to buy more. as a Boogie MkIIb+ simul-class owner, i did also buy a MkIIc-simul-class. Unfortunately Hard times made me sell them. I currently own a V-Twin pedal that I use into a Duncan Convertable (power-amp only)into 4-12 Fender cabs- However, Al makes the 1-12 combo look good again!

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