Roberto Tola · Under The Leo Sign

UNDER THE LEO SIGN is the fourth album by guitarist and composer Roberto Tola.

After his debut on the international Jazz music scene, with his award-winning album Bein' Green in May 2017, and which included artists of absolute fame and prestige, such as the legendary saxophonist and Grammy Award Bob Mintzer and the sensational super-awarded saxophonist Najee, only to name a few, here is another important stage in the long musical life of the Sardinian artist.

A crackling debut which was followed by the albums Colors (2020) and Kon Tiki (2021). Internationally critically acclaimed performances featured the stellar and unattainable American drummer Billy Cobham, as well as saxophonist Michael 
Lington, pianist and keyboardist Scott Wilkie and Italian trumpeter Andrea Tofanelli. This is a  demonstration of how Roberto Tola is an artist loved and appreciated by artists of the genre all over the world.

The new album, linked to the vibrant energy of the sign of Leo (Roberto's zodiac sign), available from 27 June 2023, tells of vitality, creativity and brightness, intense colors, romanticism and idealism, but also of sweetness and melancholy.

The 9 songs on this new album are in fact fragments of life lived by the artist, portraits of intimate moments, of a special journey, of places of the heart and of special people dear to the artist. All the songs on the album are true stories that the artist has transliterated into music, with particular spiritual sensitivity and emotional involvement.

The album opens with the track entitled "DRIVING TO MADRID", inspired by a special journey undertaken by the artist aboard his convertible under the Spanish sky in 2019, which took him from the warm port of Barcelona to the royal city of Madrid , for a tour that saw him busy on important stages in some concerts in Spain. 

The musical journey of the album continues with a special tribute to his mother, to whom Roberto dedicates the song "MARAYA", with the American trumpeter from Richmond Bill McGee as a special guest.

The musical roundup continues with the intimate and poignant "A CHRISTMAS AGO", a song with an absolutely Christmas flavor, inspired by the memory of his beloved sister Tiana on the day of the first Christmas after her untimely death in 2021.

Another song of this new musical work by Roberto is dedicated to the most enchanting and  breathtaking places of Sardinia (Italy) and the Mediterranean, natural, mysterious and enchanting bucolic and contemplative monuments in which to find inspiration, such as the "VALLE DELLA LUNA"  (moon valley), which gives its title to the fifth track of the album.

Valle della Luna is therefore a place dear to Roberto's heart, also because it is connected to a friendship that the artist cultivated and cherished with his friend Paolo, a naturalistic guide in that area and who recently passed away, who lived in this place like a king, among the scents of the Mediterranean scrub and the original megalithic granite formations unique in the world and which create a breathtaking, almost lunar, original landscape.

In this new musical work Roberto also paints the talent of one of those artists who have inspired him the most during his long musical career, among these is Al Jarreau.

Roberto celebrates the unforgotten legendary American singer in the roaring songs "SAYS" and "ROOF GARDEN", the only covers of the album, totally arranged by Roberto.

Other tracks on the album, such as "SUN KISS" and "SUNNY MORNING (SUMMER PARTY)", reflect Roberto's predilection for light and the sun, to return to the theme of the sign of the lion, symbol of energy, passion and euphoria, as well as the Roberto’s roaring music, always rigorous and refined.

Another piece of particular interest is the track MEN ON GROOVE (featuting the Grammy Award saxophonist Eric Marienthal), a true exercise in style, with a Jazz Rock and Latin Jazz taste that the protagonists of this musical gem embellish with their instrumental talent.

We are faced with a virtuoso album in which Roberto and his musician friends show all their talent in the various spaces of improvisation throughout the album, including the multifaceted acoustic, electric and distorted solos of Roberto himself, as well as the prestigious famous Californian saxophonist Eric Marienthal in his bombastic solo on the track “Men On Groove”, as well as the aforementioned
trumpeter Bill McGee in the emotional solo on the track “Maraya”, followed by the engaging and passionate solos by the talented Spanish pianist Marco Rasa on “Driving To Madrid” and the youngest and most sensational 21-year-old Argentine pianist Luciano De La Rosa in “Valle Della Luna”; as well as the eclectic and multifaceted Polish bassist Maciek Szczyciński in his vibrant double bass solo in “Men On Groove” and, last but not least, the sensational and talented singer from Grenada Zorina Andall in “Sunny Morning (Summer Party) and “A Chrismas Ago”.

UNDER THE LEO SIGN is an album of jazz, funk, progressive and cultured fusion, with a touch of good rock and Latin jazz that show the spirit and personality of Roberto Tola and his predilection for the combination of different musical styles in each track of the album.

Listen Roberto Tola "Driving To Madrid" on SmoothJazz Weekend Radio Playlist