Coming on the scene in the late ’80s/early
’90s as a new guitar hot shot, Eric Johnson lit up the frets and the
music world with a Grammy Award win for his original instrumental,
“Cliffs of Dover,” in 1991. Though a multi-instrumentalist of the
highest order, he is mostly known for his fluid guitar pyrotechnics.
word that Built to Spill is working on what will be its eighth
full-length studio effort, which we’re told will probably drop in late
2014. Until then, the band has embarked on an extensive tour, which is
good news for those of us who like to get lost in sound — Built to
Spill’s epic guitar reveries are even more immersive in a live setting.
For Chicagoan Frank Blinkal, a day-and-night club job at
Buddy Guy’s Legends gave him a front row seat and unprecedented access
to some of the greatest names in Blues — Otis Rush, Lonnie Brooks and
Junior Wells, not to mention Legends’ illustrious owner.
There are guitar slingers, guitar masters, guitar heroes
and guitar stranglers, and then there are the rare guitar icons, players
who possess a distinctive style that makes them immediately
recognizable after just a few notes. Sonny Landreth is surely among that hallowed group.
Eight years ago,
guitarist/vocalist Justin Ringle relocated from his native Idaho to
Portland, Ore., and very quickly shifted his stylistic allegiance from
the aggressive Rock he had played at home to a gentler Folk sound. He formed Horse Feathers to pursue
his newfound acoustic passion and garnered rabid fans and critical
acclaim, with reviewers
consistently pointing out the wonderful tension between the dark
poignancy of Ringle’s lyrics and the expansive beauty of the music that
Ric Hordinski’s name on any project or event is the musical version of
the Good Housekeeping seal of approval.
So it is with Joel Henderson’s release gig at Hordinski’s Monastery studio in
Walnut Hills as he introduces his new release, Locked Doors & Pretty Fences.
During the past decade and a half,
guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Tim Kasher has served as the reeling ringmaster
for the dark, wonderfully dysfunctional circus known as Cursive. A
constantly fluctuating membership has resulted in Cursive’s fascinatingly malleable
sound, from the Indie Rock gravity of 1997’s Such Blinding Stars for Starving Eyes to the denser and more
conceptual Early Summer: Semantics of
Song in 1998 to the string-driven Burst
and Bloom and The Ugly Organ in
the new millennium.
When Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady assembled Hot Tuna in
1969, it seemed like little more than a busman’s Blues holiday for the
respective guitarist and bassist from Jefferson Airplane, a way for the
duo to work out their Delta and Piedmont obsession while the Airplane
sat on the runway. Amazingly and against all conceivable odds, Hot Tuna is still a vital musical entity 43 years after its formation.