The Valencian singer Jonatan Penalba was born in l’Alcúdia (Ribera Alta) in 1991 and, despite his youth, he is already a veteran in the world of traditional song. At 5 years old he was already singing albaes, and he joined the Grup de Balls Populars Les Folies de Carcaixent before turning 18, a formation with which he has performed in multiple festivals throughout the Spanish state.
His voice (someone has said that “he sings like the old men”) was educated by his admired teachers: Pep Moreno (in the case of the dawn) and the great Victoria Sousa “Victorieta” (in regards to the cant d'estil) .
“De soca-rel” (Temps Record 2018) is the first solo album by Jonatan Penalba, which will surely place him in a very prominent place within the Valencian folk scene.
“De soca-rel” is the record of a young man of our time in love with tradition, and that is why he approaches it with renewed and current airs. This is noticeable in the use of traditional and modern instruments. And also in the chosen themes: a mix of “contemporary classics” (songs like Tio Canya, from the group AL TALL, Al pais de l'olivera, by OBRINT PAS, or La cançó de la rosa de paper, with lyrics by the great poet Vicent Andrés Estellés) and traditional themes (work songs, fandango, jota and riberenca, in some cases with lyrics updated for the occasion by Joanjo Moixino).
The musicians who have participated in the recording of the album have been the usual band that accompanies Jonatan Penalba at concerts: Àlvar Calabuig (percussion), David Borja (electric bass), Enric Calabuig (piano and keyboards), Hèctor Peropadre (lute and accordion) and Pere Ródenas (guitars, oud, tres and precussion, and who has also been in charge of the arrangements and production). As special collaborators are Xus Belda (percussion), Christian Penalba, Patxi Ferrer and Irene García (voices), Vicent Carrasco (guitar), Toni Molina (trombone and trumpet), Llorenç Belda (clarinet), Carlos Moisés Miró (flute) and Juanra Martí (dulzainas). Finally, also note the participation of Pep Gimeno "Botifarra", who for years has "sponsored" Jonatan Penalba, and with whom he has shared the stage more than once.
The prologue of the album is the work of the prestigious Valencian music critic Josep Vicent Frechina.