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Spain (instrumental)

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Spain is an instrumental jazz fusion composition by jazz pianist and composer Chick Corea. It is likely Corea's most recognized piece, and some would consider it a modern jazz standard.


Spain was composed in 1971 and appeared in its original (and most well-known) rendition on the album Light as a Feather, with performances by Corea (Rhodes electric piano), Airto Moreira (drums), Flora Purim (vocals and percussion), Stanley Clarke (bass), and Joe Farrell (flute). It has been recorded in several versions, by Corea himself as well as by other artists, including a flamenco version by Paco de Lucia and John McLaughlin in the 1980s, and a progressive bluegrass version by Bela Fleck in 1979. More recently, Corea has performed it as a duo with Japanese pianist Hiromi Uehara.

The Light as a Feather version of Spain received two Grammy nominations, for Best Instrumental Arrangement and for Best Instrumental Jazz Performance by a Group. In 2001, Corea was awarded the Best Instrumental Arrangement Grammy for "Spain for Sextet and Orchestra".


Corea opens the Light as a Feather version of Spain with the adagio from Joaquin Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez. After the intro, the song switches to a fast, steady samba-like rhythm, in which the main theme and an improvisation part are repeated. At the break, the listener is required to clap along to the beat.

The chord progression used during the improvisation part is based on harmonic progressions in Rodrigo's concerto. It runs as follows:

Gmaj7 F#7 Em7 A7 Dmaj7 (Gmaj7) C#7 F#7 Bm B7

In line with jazz philosophy, other interpretations of the song are structured differently and some might only retain the main theme or parts of it. In the Paco de Lucia and John McLaughlin version some chords are altered in parts, including the F#7 to F#7b9 or F#7aug and C#7 to C#7#9.


  • Light as a Feather (1972) - Chick Corea and Return to Forever
  • Akoustic Band (1989) - Chick Corea w. Akoustic Band
  • Play (1990) - Chick Corea w. Bobby McFerrin
  • Return to the Seventh Galaxy: The Anthology (CD 1996) - Chick Corea w. Bill Connors, Stanley Clarke & Lenny White
  • Alexia In a Jazz Mood (CD 1996) - Alexia Vassiliou feat. Chick Corea
  • Solo Piano: Originals (CD 2000) - Chick Corea solo
  • Corea.Concerto (2001) - Chick Corea w. Origin and the London Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Rendezvous in New York (CD 2003, DVD 2005) - Chick Corea w. Akoustic Band (DVD only), and w/ Bobby McFerrin and Bela Fleck (DVD only), and w/ Gonzalo Rubalcaba (CD/DVD)
  • Elektric Band: Live at Montreux 2004 (2004) - Chick Corea w. Elektric Band
  • Akoustic Band 1991 (DVD 2005) - Chick Corea w. Akoustic Band
  • Duet (2009) - Chick Corea & Hiromi Uehara
  • Trilogy (2013) - Check Corea with Christian McBride and Brian Blade
  • Various covers by other artists, including:

  • Manhattan Wildlife Refuge (1974) - Bill Watrous
  • Live and Improvised (1976) - Blood Sweat & Tears
  • Something You Got (1977) - Art Farmer
  • Crossing the Tracks (1979) - Bela Fleck
  • This Time (1980) - Al Jarreau (with lyrics)
  • Live With Vic Juris (1985) - Bireli Lagrene
  • Jaco Pastorius & Bireli Lagrene & Alex Bally (1985) - Bireli Lagrene & Jaco Pastorius of jazzpoint records
  • New Weave (1986) - Rare Silk
  • Naurava Kulkuri (1986) - Vesa-Matti Loiri (under a pseudonym Jean-Pierre Kusela, with Finnish lyrics written by himself)
  • Sensacion (1987) - Tito Puente
  • Daybreak (1987) - Bela Fleck
  • Thousand Wave (1988) - Takahiro Matsumoto
  • GRP All-Star Big Band (1992) - GRP All-Star Big Band
  • Rosenberg Trio: Live at the North Sea Jazz Festival (1993) - Rosenberg Trio
  • Zlatko (1995) - Zlatko Manojlović
  • DGQ-20 (1996) - David Grisman Quintet
  • Two Guitars One Passion (1996) - Lara & Reyes
  • Tango del Fuego (1999) - James Galway
  • Czechmate (1999) - Druha Trava
  • Spain (2000) - Michel Camilo & Tomatito
  • La Nuit Des Gitans (2001) - Raphael Fays
  • Crosscurrent (2005) - Jake Shimabukuro
  • Gently Weeps (2006) - Jake Shimabukuro
  • Steps (2009) - Cluster
  • Keropak (2010) - Ayaka Hirahara
  • Live at Last (2008) - Stevie Wonder
  • Acoustic live (2009) - Pegasus (Issei Noro & Tetsuo Sakurai)
  • Joe Robinson and Slava Grigoryan for Hey Hey It's Saturday in 2009
  • The Story So Far (2011) - Sarah Ellen Hughes and Sector7
  • Spanish Suite (Concierto de Aranjuez - Spain) (2014) - Chick Corea, Eric Owens, Terence Blanchard & The Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra
  • References

    Spain (instrumental) Wikipedia

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