Gee-tar
October 25, 2006 12:44 AM   Subscribe

Erik Mongrain is the latest artist to use extended techniques on the guitar (YouTube link 1 2), following closely (by his own admission) in the footsteps of the late Michael Hedges (YouTube link 1 2 3), although jazz guitarist Stanley Jordan is a notable predecessor, as well as Emmett Chapman. Still, no-one else quite has the tuning peg mojo of Adrian Legg.
posted by starkeffect (18 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
 
great stuff - check out Mark Wilson
posted by quarsan at 1:36 AM on October 25, 2006


Reminds me a lot of Justin King. It's always fun to discover new guitarists. Nice post.
posted by Zero Gravitas at 1:59 AM on October 25, 2006


Thanks for bringing attention to Adrian Legg, I'd never heard of him. That YouTube bit with the tuning pegs was delightful. I'll definitely be exploring more on his own website: he's got a lot of audio clips there (just snippets, though... wanna hear more? Buy a CD!). Some of this other stuff, for me anyway, kinda slips into guitar wankery/new age snoozery, but hey, different strokes, right? Thanks for the post!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:10 AM on October 25, 2006


Also, check out kaki king. This is some of her earlier work. She's gotten far better, both compositionally and with her playing. She just released an album of jazzy indie rock with her playing electric guitar and steel guitar. Man, she's really good.
posted by nonreflectiveobject at 3:04 AM on October 25, 2006 [1 favorite]


Erik Mongrain is simply jaw dropping amazing.
I couldn't believe my ears when i saw him on the TV shows here.
Truly an example of one becoming one with his instrument.
posted by zenzizi at 4:44 AM on October 25, 2006


When I close my eyes it sounds just like the Dave Matthews Band!
posted by noble_rot at 5:21 AM on October 25, 2006


The guy has chops and no mistaking.

Is he using some kind of open tuning? I'd have thought it hard enough to change the attitude of your playing without having to shift notes around on the fingerboard, however, in that first YouTube clip, it sounded like an open tuning when he was doing the slappy bit at the beginning and end..
posted by bouncebounce at 6:05 AM on October 25, 2006


In a very different direction, a sort of a be-all end-all of guitar extended technique is Keith Rowe (of AMM from 1965 until just a couple years ago, and many other more recent combinations), who, influenced by Jackson Pollock, lay his guitar down horizontally on the table (as JP had put his canvas on the floor).

Rowe's techniques have become totally commonplace in improvised and experimental musics, but another recent guitar innovator is Kevin Drumm. Also worth mentioning Taku Sugimoto, who doesn't even really play his anymore, although he still records (mostly silent) cds and performs (mostly silent) concerts. I've heard Taku is starting to play more notes these days though...
posted by Joseph Gurl at 6:18 AM on October 25, 2006 [1 favorite]


No mention of extended techniques on the guitar is complete without Michael Kelsey. I've never seen anyone get more out of a guitar. Here's an mp3 and video.
He beats on it, slaps it, taps it, plays slide on it with a microphone stand and hits machine-gun strums like it's whistling dixie. His early stuff reminds me of Michael Hedges, but lately he's got this crazy percussive jazz tone working for him.
posted by leapfrog at 6:31 AM on October 25, 2006


I've heard Taku is starting to play more notes these days though..

Yeah, I think he played at least 6, just the other day. Between breakfast and a midnight snack :)
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:42 AM on October 25, 2006


Allow me to put in my two cents for Don Ross.
posted by jonson at 7:05 AM on October 25, 2006


The guy has chops, but what's the point of being one guitartist who sounds like two, or even three, guitarists playing music no one wants to listen to? It sounds like background music to an instructional video.
posted by argybarg at 7:08 AM on October 25, 2006


It sounds like background music to an instructional video.

Yeah, like one of those "Learn Guitar the Eric Mongrain Way" instructional videos, especially.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:23 AM on October 25, 2006


keller williams does this kind of stuff too, but with more THC.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 7:58 AM on October 25, 2006


Wow, this has been a delightful way to spend a sniffy, raining morning. Thanks so much for the post and all the additional links! I've always wanted to play the guitar, but have never invested the time. This makes me want to go pull the guitar out of the case and try again.
posted by dejah420 at 8:39 AM on October 25, 2006


Ooops, forgot to add: Tommy Emmanuel.
posted by dejah420 at 9:13 AM on October 25, 2006


Adrian Legg is wonderful in concert. Besides the great music you'll get great stories too.

And he's a fairly accomplished photographer.
posted by beowulf573 at 11:39 AM on October 25, 2006


Damn. I love Erik Mongrain.
posted by geekhorde at 5:24 PM on October 25, 2006


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