Antoine Dufour – Acoustic Guitar These Moments
Hammer ons, pull offs , taps, harmonics open tuning and beauty.
Antoine Dufour – Acoustic Guitar These Moments
Here’s an interesting video by acoustic guitar virtuoso Preston Reed, the tune is called Tractor Pull. It includes hammer ons, pull offs, artificial harmonics and tapping. this will be of great interest to acoustic guitar enthusiasts that like players such as Andy Mcgee, Don Ross and Michael Hedges.
To check out Preston Reed’s site go to Preston Reed
Here is a very beautiful Acoustic Guitar tune by Antoine Dufour, the Canadian guitar player. It is called ‘In my own Rhythms’
For more brilliant acoustic guitar check out Antoine Dufour
Here’s Antoine Dufour on Harp Guitar and Tommy Gauthier on violin playing an original composition called Solitude. Whereas many of the guitar tappers do acrobats and exhibit phenomenal skills which will push the acoustic guitar into new areas, Antoine always leans towards playing music. Tommy’s playing on this is exceptional
Peppino D’Agostiino is a tremendous acoustic guitar player who I first heard in the 1980’s playing open tuned guitar (think DADGAD etc) . This youtube acoustic video is of Peppino performing live at the International Guitar Night Concert, which is also available on DVD.
Every now and then I think it’s important to introduce visitors to this site to acoustic guitar players that they are probably not aware of. Recently I got an email from a player by the name of Jimmy Robinson who said to check out what he was doing, so I did, and I loved his playing. His choice of notes and chords on guitar is quite extraordinary, and also what surprised also was the texture of his voice, how nicely it sat against his guitar. In some of his other material I was hearing snippets of Robbie Basho, there’s a little Hedges in there two and mabe some Bruce Cockburn and at the same time a uniqueness. Jimmy is from New Orleans. I’m grateful for the email and more than happy to share his music with you.
Here’s Jimmy’s website, check him out Jimmy Robinson Site
Don Ross and Andy McKee on Youtube Video. Both these players play extraordiary guitar, to have them together is a treat. The tune is called Ebon Coast.
For more Andy MCkee, go to Andy McKee
Here is a very interesting Acoustic Guitar video of a guitar player by the name of Justin King using acoustic guitar tapping techniques. Justin has an album called Bleu. To hear samples of Justins music, go to the website at the following address, Justin King
To hear another brilliant contemporary acoustic guitar players go to Acoustic Guitar Player, go to Antoin Dufour
Here is a very interesting Video of an Acoustic Guitar arrangement of the traditional Irish tune Shi Bhig Shi Mhor in DADGAD tuning, played by Pierre Bensusan. This arrangement is an improvisation around the original tune. The last couple of minutes of the video has a split screen of right and left hand which will enable you to get in close and see what’s going on. Pierre is one of those guitar players that can make something complex sound and look simple. Pierre Bensusan plays mainly in DADGAD, but a major difference in his playing and many other DADGAD players is that he doesn’t limit his playing to tunes which are strictly DADGAD or tunes in D or D Minor, he treats the tuning as if it were standard tuning.
To check out Pierre Bensusan’s website go to Pierre Bensusan DADGAD Music, I recently attended a concert and a Workshop of Pierre’s, and let me tell you, he’s exceptional !
I found this guy Peter Mulvey by accident and I thought it would be nice to share his playing with you. It’s very thoughtful acoustic guitar and this tune also has some nice harmonics and tapping, so as a fellow guitar player I totally appreciate what he does . Peter is also a singer songwriter, his site is at PeterMulvey Dot Com
Here is his acoustic fingerstyle video Youtube called Black Rabbit
Here’s a youtube from 1978 of the very , brilliant John Martyn doing Bless the Weather. John Martyn was very inspired by his contemporary Nick Drake. In fact Solid Air was in dedication to Nick Drake. John Martyn is one of the many British Guitarists that uses open tunings. Other examples are Davey Graham, John Renbourn and Martin Simpson .
Pierre Bensusan is one of my two favourite fingerstyle acoustic guitarists, the other being the late Michael Hedges. Bensusan is the master of DADGAD tuning. The song that he is doing, from my memory was an old O’Carolan tune about a battle between two groups of warring fairies. I like Bensusan because he takes a tune and makes it his own. This piece is a grreat one to add to the acoustic guitarists repertoire. One thing that I often do is use an instrumental to string a couple of tunes together which are in the same key or even play a whole tune as a guitar break. By playing solo arrangements it will make you a stronger player and also it’s handy for when the vocal mike falls off the stage and you need to recover without a fuss.
Michael Hedges admired Pierre Bensusan so much he recorded a tune called Bensusan on Aerial Boundaries and Bensusan recorded a tune in memory of Michael Hedges on the Intuite album. Bensusan’s music has a certain amount of sensitivity, don’t be fooled by the ease which he plays it, try it yourself. 🙂 Then you may have an idea why I admire this guy so much.
Jerry Douglas for many years now has been regarded as one of the top players in his field, resonator slide guitar. It’s about 30 years since I first heard him and to watch play in numerous diverse line ups has only proved how brilliant he really is, from the straight Country, to New Blugrass with Edgar Meyer and Russ Barenburg, I even saw a video of him playing with New York Jazz guitarist Bill Frisell. You only need to hear one or two notes and you’ll know it’s him. So today I thought it would be good to do a short post about Jerry Douglas youtube video and expose his talents to people that may not normally listen to his style, which in truth is quite broad. It’s a medley of tunes, the second one was recorded on an album Skip Hop Wobble. Resonator Guitar at it’s best!
I first became aware of the guitar player Kaki King when I read a Frets magazine a couple of years back, it had an article about her, in it they said she was one of the most interesting guitarists since Michael Hedges, that was enough for me to take notice. Her technique is worth watching, it’s unconventional but that’s how music forges ahead, throw the rule book out of the window. This youtube video of her is very good and the tune stands up, she’s playing an Ovation guitar. The Ovations came to the fore in the mid seventies because they were one of the best acoustics to you in a live situation. For me, this tune is a little Hedgesish (as in Michael Hedges style).
Joni Mitchell is one of the truly great acoustic guitar innovators. A lot of people that aren’t guitar addicts may not realize how great she is and would just see her as a good songwriter, poet and singer. Don’t be fooled by those labels, her contribution to open tuned acoustic guitar is almost unparalleled. Others such as Davey Graham, Michael Hedges, Pierre Bensusan, Alex De Grassi and others made massive contributions to this artform that has pushed the guitar into new areas but Joni Mitchells work really neds to be explored by guitar players, her relaxed style, her throwing out the rule book, unconvential strumming/picking hand. And the amount of open tunings she used to create a backdrop for her musical poetry. I was fortunate enought o see her live, wow.
Don’t be fooled, she is extraordinary. The song is Night Ride Home
in this song she’s playing a semi-acoustic. The song is Edith and the Kingpin
Note Pat Metheny in the background. Here is a link to Pat Metheny on a Linda Manzer Baritone Acoustic Guitar. PAT METHENY
Dedicated To My Son Joshua (1980 – 1999)
A few years ago I recorded a piece of music called ‘The Gap Between the Worlds’ it seems a relevant time to share it with my friends. It’s in open-tuning and is a little ambient and has a certain amount of beauty in it.
To add beauty to the world is a worthwhile thing. we all don’t see the same things as beautiful, but to me this is. The song is in an mp3 format.
There is something extraordinary about having children, a part of us living on when we quietly leave the stage of life. To have a child that leaves before us no doubt is the greatest fear of any parent. As a parent that has met with this experience I feel qualified to discuss it from the point of view where what I say is potent and maybe useful to others that may go through this experience.
Children are a gift; we hold them gently in our care for sometime, we welcome them with open arms and if we are to live in happiness we must be prepared to let them walk freely from the world when it is their time to go. If we don’t do this we can find ourselves in a prison house of grief. This prison house will prevent us to live our own life’s journey in a way that is fitting for the gift of life that we have been given.
Where there is pain, there is clinging; clinging or attachment to things that we know do not last, regardless how deep our love may be for that thing, experience or person. Those that love us and have moved into forever only wish us well and wish to have us live in joy, not suffering for what might have been.
So today is the Birthday of my child that moved from this world in 1999, and I will not pretend that sadness doesn’t swallow me at times, but I will say I have the duty to myself and those around me to take the wisdom from my sons passing and seek to embrace the moments that I have here in this life and live them with the value that they deserve.
And the only Path worth following is one with a Heart and that is the Gap Between Worlds.
To listen click: The Gap Between the Worlds
And here is another piece recorded shortly after my son moved on: The Bardo
My first encounter with the music of David Wilcox was when I read an Acoustic Guitar Magazine in the early 90’s. A few years later when they named the top 10 acoustic guitar albums, his album ‘How Did You Find Me Here’ was included in the list. I’m not surprised. David Wilcox plays mainly open tunings, he also uses capo’s and half capos. His technique is very smooth and relaxed and it’s not until you try and play his music that you realise how good he is. As far as I am concerned, David would have to be one of the best singer songwriters on the planet. I was fortunate enough on the day I was looking for his music in the 90’s to find two of his albums in the shops, as I live in Australia, this is a little odd. I have never sen his music in the shops here since.
I’ve posted information about him because I know that there are many people that wish to play guitar and sing. David Wilcox is a perfect example of how we can express music with one guitar and one voice. He’s a master songwriter with a perfect voice.
Gordon Giltrap recorded an excellent album in the seventies (1977) . At the time, my memory tells me he was playing Flyde guitars, a guitar company that made a lot of unique instrument. If you haven’t heard him and you like beautiful guitar playing I suggest you watch this youTube. It’s called Mrs Singers Waltz, and I guess if ever a contemporary tune sounded romantic, this is it. Complete with a couple waltzing.
I heard that Gordon had recently been playing guitar with the great Scottish guitarist martin Taylor… my mind boggled at the idea of these two guys teaming up. Especially when they were both favourites of mine in their respective styles.
Being able to play great solo guitar for me is much more satisfying than playing guitar solos, bith are valid. Although there are strings in this tune it would still stand up as a solo piece. It’s a wonderful thing to watch all these players play after enjoying their music 30 years ago and they just get better, more musical and are a great inspiration to us all as we seek out our own musical personalities.
Gorgeous guitar playing
Steven Baughman is a magnificentopen tuning fingerstyle guitar player. I first heard of himabout 8 years ago when I was playing Celtic style guitar and from memory Pierre Bensusan had mentioned how good he was, so I followed through on therecommendation.
Traditional Celtic tunes are not only beautiful to listen to but as a player they give you a lot back in return for your efforts, regardless how old they often are, there is always something new to be found in them. I recommend if you plan on learning any of the Celtic tunes, see if you can get to hear a vocal version, this may help you interpret them. The third song is very humorous in its execution in this song check out the rhytmic texture created by his right hand, also watch Steve’s left hand very closely in the first two songs. A lot of players try this style, Steve Baughman does it better than most.
For years now I’ve been a lover of both Indian music and the blues. Due to my studies with the Sarod player Ashok Roy I have played quite a few instrumentals in open tuning, I used to use the tuning B, F# , B , F#, B and E working from the Bass up, the bottom end of the guitar was tuned quite low. I found it very interesting playing in this tuning. My teacher used to sing the parts to me, I’d sing them back, then I’d transcribe it in the Indian notation and then play it back.
I first heard of Harry Manx a few years ago when he toured my local area. What I like about he is he has bridged the gap between Western and Indian music quite well. he plays the Mohan Vina, an instrument played by the musician Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt. The vina is a traditional Indian instrument in a similar vain to the sitar. I feel it is important to see what some of the musicians are doing that are playing a little outside the norm because when we hear new things they can create new possiblilities for other players. I’ve linked to two youtube videos of Harry Manx the Canadian player, one is blues slide and the other a mix of Indian and blues.
Can’t be Satisfied
How comfortable does he look playing?
The aim of this blog site is to inspire guitar players.
So many of the rock groups of the sixties and seventies are known for their electric music. At the time and even still I liked the Led Zeppelin 3 album, complete with cover that rotated. I’ve decided to post their recording of ‘Bron-Yr-Aur-Stomp’. The acoustic guitar playing of Jimmy Page was definitely influenced by the music of Davy Graham. There are parts of the song where I’m thinking Bluegrass, in fact I think that one of the music quotes is from Turkey in the Straw. This recording /youTube is from 1975. Back then it was much harder to use acoustic guitars in a live situation. i love the reintroduction of the rhythm part at about 4.40
The cover of Led Zeppelin 111 album
Enjoy the youTube video of the acoustic guitar song “Bron-Yr-Aur-Stomp’
One of the great guitar players to come of Scotland is John Martyn, he influenced many acoustic guitar players. The band America recorded one of his songs ‘Head and Heart’ on their second album. Also Eric Clapton recorded his tune “May You Never’.
John Martyn was very influenced by Davy Graham and the late Nick Drake. Both of these players were his contemporaries and he wrote Solid Air about Nick Drake.
John Martyn uses a very unusual right hand technique, it is extremely percussive. He uses a number of different open tunings and manages to produce a very BIG sound for a soloist. Note how he uses left hand hammer-ons and pull offs
Enjoy the youtUbe video of John Martyn playing May You Never
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Many people are not aware of the great guitar player that influenced so many guitar players, Michael Hedges died in a car accident in 1993, he was 43 years old. He played open tuning guitar, what this means to the uninitiate is that the guitar was tuned differently. This guy is unbelievable. Be patient with this, he does his intro tune up and then. Personall I think he reinvented the acoustic guitar. He’s quite young in this video.
Enjoy the Michael Hedges youtube video
Playing solo guitar is not only one of the most enjoyable ways of playing the guitar but as anyone that has played guitar for a while would know, it is probably the most demanding. The reason being is that there is nowhere to hide. The guitar player needs to play something that holds together from the beginning to the end, keeps the interest of the listener, stays in time and needs to manage to play a combination of moving parts such as chords, melodies and counter melodies similtaneously. The classical guitarists manage to do this quite well and now have a massive repertoire of material to choose from. But most others need to make it up themselves or create arrangements of songs.
In 1983 I was living in the hills and listening to a lot of acoustic instrumental guitarists and I wrote a number of songs. At that time I was experimenting a lot with open-tuned guitars. One tune I wrote was with a simple Dropped bottom D, the Bass E string tuned down a whole tone. A few years ago I decided to do I recording of the tune. The original idea was to have a second guitar part improvising over the mid section But I felt because this guitar blog/site is about guitar education I’d upload the song without the over dub, warts and all.
The tune is a very reflective piece, I’d been travelling around Asia for quite some time and needed to settle in a place where there was a lot of trees e.g. forrest, a stream and plenty of clean air. I played it on a guitar I built myself and it was recorded direct via a Dana Bourgeous internal pickup system.
Here is the link to it http://www.the-acoustic-guitar.com/downloads/dropped_D_folk_jazz_blues.mp3
It’s an MP3 file almost 4 MB. You’ll need a reasonably fast Internet connection to download it quickly.
Over a 25 years years I’ve experimented with a lot of open tunings. originally I was inspired to do this after hearing John Martyn, John Renbourn, Stefan Grossman and then a few years after that, Michael Hedges, Pierre Bensusan, Alex de Grassi and of course Nick Drake.
Finding material to play in normal tuning is easy these days, but getting a good range of tunes is not so easy in some of the other tunings. what I’ve had to do over the years is create my tunes or rejig other tunes to suit.
A few weeks back , I was listening to an album by Anouar Brahem, the Oud player from Tunisia and the Norwegian sax player and I decided to arrange a piece of music in a version of C tuning, it’s C G C G C F from bass to treble. you’ll finfd the TAB and music notation at http://the-guitarplayer.com/?p=72 it’s very simple and short but a great piece to work with.