Every now and then Rosa’s Lounge brings in someone out of left field. Or so you think. Once you read a little about them, you realize it’s not really out of left field after all. Case in point here is Albert Castiglia (pronounced ka-STEEL-ya). Your first thought probably is who?
As it turns out, Albert was discovered by Chicago’s own harp great Junior Wells down in Florida. That right there gives him legitimacy. If Junior Wells thought he was that good to recruit him for a couple of his world tours, then he must be good.
Delving in a little further, you find out that Albert was playing with the Miami Blues Authority in 1990 and later was named best blues guitarist by the New Times Magazine in 1997. So he’s been around for a while honing his craft.
Castiglia was born in New York on August 12, 1969. At the age of 5, his family moved to Miami. Having a Cuban mother and Italian father, he blended right into the melting pot culture of Miami. He took up guitar at the age of 12. He discovered the best way to express the passion in his heart was through his music.
Legendary Junior Wells discovered Albert and immediately hired him as his guitarist/vocalist. After Junior passed away in 1998, he teamed up with Atlanta blues singer Sandra Hall. Albert then decided to venture out on his own and released his debut album in 2002, “Burn”.
Albert has worked with his longtime friend Graham Wood Drout. Graham has contributed several songs that have been included on his recordings. Castiglia and Drout released a live album titled “The Bittersweet Session” in 2005. It was an intimate acoustic performance.
In 2006, Albert released his second CD, “A Stone’s Throw”. This was his first recording for Blued Leaf Records. It included two Drout tunes, “Ghosts of Mississippi” and “Big Toe”.
In 2008, he released “These Are the Days”. This recording showcases his high intensity electric and slide guitar work and soulful vocals. It includes five Castiglia originals, including his tribute to Junior Wells, “Godfather of the Blues”. He also covers tunes by Bob Dylan, Nappy Brown and Fenton Robinson. Drout adds another song called “Celebration”. “Somebody Loan Me a Dime” and “Need Your Love So Bad” have been staples of Albert’s live shows, now they appear on this record. He also received nominations for “Song of the Year”, with “Bad Year Blues”, winning the “Illinois Blues Blast Awards”
2010 brought the release of Albert’s latest release, “Keepin’ On”. It was recorded live with very few overdubs. It includes five originals and covers by Robert Nighthawk, T-Bone Walker, John Lee Hooker and Bob Dylan.
Albert will be appearing at Rosa’s Lounge on Friday, March 30th at 9:30 P.M. Doors open at 8:00 P.M. Cover is only $10.00