Check out the 15 artists to be featured on this month’s covermount CD: Acoustic Presents… Vol. 5
Albert Lee – ‘Eighteen Yellow Roses’
Described as the “ultimate virtuoso” by Eric Clapton, Albert Lee is set to appear on the London Acoustic Show’s main stage on Saturday 12 September 2015 in association with LR Baggs and Ernie Ball to perform tracks from his new album Highwayman and to talk about his enduring career as one of the greatest guitar players alive. Recent accolades include Grammys for contributions on Earl Scrugg’s Foggy Mountain Breakdown and Brad Paisley’s Cluster Pluck and also appearing on stage at the “Concert For George” with music legends Sir Paul McCartney, Tom Petty, and Eric Clapton.
Preston Reed – ‘Delayed Train’
One of the most influential guitarists in the world, Preston Reed has captivated audiences globally for almost three decades with the two-handed integrated percussive style he began developing in the 1980s. He’s a direct influence on many of today’s best-known acoustic players including Andy McKee and Jon Gomm. Preston’s timeless compositions are as unique as his execution. Blues, rock, metal, funk, jazz and classical styles are distilled into a visual and sonic experience – a border-hopping musical language that tells stories without words. Reed continues to define the sound of the pioneering compositional guitar genre.
Jon Gomm – ‘What’s Left For You?’
Jon Gomm is an acoustic singer-songwriter with a revolutionary virtuoso guitar style, where he uses one guitar to create drum sounds, bass lines and twisting melodies all at the same time. The emphasis is still on the soulful vocals and songwriting, and his original material is influenced by everything from Robert Johnson to Radiohead. In 2012, his song ‘Passionflower’ went viral online with the video passing nine million hits. Jon’s released three studio albums and tours worldwide. His new album, made up of live versions of fan favourites titled Live In The Acoustic Asylum is set for release on September 8 2015.
Luca Stricagnoli – ‘Thunderstruck’
Luca was born in 1991 in Varese, northern Italy. He showed great interest in playing guitar from a very young age and took his first lesson at the age of 10. Later he decided to leave his studies to focus on learning non-conventional techniques which win him many talent shows and competitions. Luca then kept experimenting: new original techniques and the use of multiple guitars at once. At 22, Luca became part of the biggest acoustic guitar label in the world, CandyRat Records and his videos reached an incredible amount of views on YouTube. The real deal arrives with an AC/DC rearrangement, ‘Thunderstruck’ receiving nearly 10 million views and counting on different social networks in just a few weeks.
Craig Ogden – ‘I Giorni’ (featuring Ji Liu)
Australian born guitarist Craig Ogden is one of the most exciting artists of his generation. He studied guitar from the age of seven and percussion from the age of 13. He is the youngest instrumentalist to have received a Fellowship Award from the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. One of the UK’s most recorded guitarists, his recordings for Virgin/EMI, Chandos, Nimbus, Hyperion, Sony and Classic FM have received wide acclaim. His latest CD Craig Ogden and Friends is out now. Craig Ogden has performed concertos with all of the main UK orchestras plus many abroad and has presented on BBC Radio 3 and on ABC Classic FM (Australia).
Luke Jackson – Misspent History
Luke is a young roots singer-songwriter from Canterbury, Kent, who in 2013 was nominated in the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards for both the Horizon Award for Best Emerging Talent and The Young Folk Category. With a bold, distinctive voice and a sweet, percussive guitar style, Luke is a confident and captivating live performer. He was also winner of Fatea’s Male Artist of the Year 2014. Over the past few years, Luke has steadily been developing a reputation for himself in the folk and roots circuits either through his solo shows, many festival appearances or when opening for such luminaries as Show of Hands, Steve Knightley, Martyn Joseph, Karine Polwart, Oysterband, Paul Brady, Glenn Tilbrook, Sarah Jarosz and Lucy Ward.
Chico and the Gypsies – ‘Amor De Mis Amores’
Chico Bouchikhi – co-founder of The Gipsy Kings and co-writer of their biggest hits (‘Djobi Djoba’, ‘Bamboléo’ and ‘Soy’) – has built up a phenomenal worldwide audience of millions of music fans. The band’s infectious brand of rumba, flamenco, Latin-pop and rock tunes is joyful, flamboyant and hugely entertaining. The architect of the Gipsy Kings’ success, Chico saw them become the first French group to be awarded a platinum disc in the US and go on to sell an estimated 20 million albums, making them the biggest world music crossover act. Chico & The Gypsies will be touring the UK in October to support the release of their latest album, Fiesta.
Daniel Ho – ‘Peace Of The Ocean’
Daniel Ho’s simple philosophy of presenting music with sincerity and artistry encompasses six consecutive Grammy Awards, number-one albums on national airplay charts, and top-10 albums on Billboard. In 2010, his solo ukulele CD, Polani (Pure), was the first ukulele album in music history to receive a Grammy nomination. On piano, the following year, he received a nomination for Best Pop Instrumental Album for his CD, E Kahe Malie (Flowing Gently). Most recently, in 2012, Daniel’s album On A Gentle Island Breeze was nominated for a Grammy in the World Music category. A Honolulu native, Daniel started music lessons at an early age and spent his teenage years orchestrating big band arrangements. Daniel performs original songs in English and Hawaiian that feature his versatility on ukulele, slack key guitar, and piano.
Jenn Bostic – ‘I Don’t Like You At All’
Jenn Bostic’s new album, Faithful, signals the confidence she’s gained from becoming “big in the U.K.” You can hear how that outpouring of fan love has freed the Nashville-based singer-songwriter to trust more fully in her instincts as an artist, a perspective reflected in the disc’s anthemic title track, which takes up the idea of keeping faith with yourself. This thread is woven throughout Faithful, in large part a meditation on inner-strength and how your response to what life throws at you defines your character. In Jenn’s case, that’s meant not throwing in the towel when her early work was rejected by so-called star-makers and not resting on her laurels when her song ‘Jealous Of The Angels’ connected with an audience unimagined by those same industry figures.
We Banjo 3 – ‘Get On Board’ (Live)
One of the best live acts to come out of Ireland in recent years, the multi-award-winning We Banjo 3 combine supergroup credentials with a breath-taking command of the emotive power of fiddle, guitar, mandolin and banjo. Any single member of this group could a electrify a venue with a solo performance, but together, in the joyous musical alchemy of We Banjo 3, their passionate lead vocalist like a young Springsteen adopted by the Chieftans, the result is truly unforgettable. On both sides of the Atlantic the word is out about this group. And along with the buzz, the same refrain is always heard: ‘See them while you can.’ We Banjo 3. The new gold standard of traditional Irish and American roots music.
Pete Gardiner – ‘Idols’
Pete is a singer songwriter from Northern Ireland. He has had a passion for music since the age of six when he first heard Slash play the opening three chords of ‘Knocking on Heavens’ Door’ and knew then music was going to play a major role in his life. He writes about his circumstances at any given moment, his relationships, doomed love affairs, news stories that hit him hard and pretty much any idea that comes into his head that he thinks is worth noting down. Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, and Bruce Springsteen are three of the greatest influences in his life. Pete has just finished recording his debut album with award-winning Irish producer Tommy McLaughlin (The Villagers) and mastered at Abbey Road. His first single ‘Idols’ will be released in August.
Maple Bee – ‘Nobody Knows’
Little Victories is Maple Bee’s latest self-produced album of 10 melodic musical tales, dancing from the romantic longing of the Stevie Nicks-esque ‘Nobody Knows’, to the struggle with sanity on the modern folk of ‘Doctor’ and ‘To All The Lost’. From her early years spent on a round-the-world boat trip with her family, listening to the fantastical narratives of Kate Bush and Maddy Prior, to a musical her-story writing and performing in bands like Mediaeval Baebes, Maple Bee’s aesthetic is unashamedly other worldly, spooky – siren call vocals and the lyrics of myth.
Maddison’s Thread – ‘The Viking’s Daughter’
‘I was unemployed living in a London bedsit when I began playing acoustic guitar. I’d been like a grasshopper flitting from one genre to another until I alighted upon John Martyn’s The Tumbler and Cat Stevens’ Tea for the Tillerman. I was hooked on the earthy organic flavour of the acoustic guitar and, being a romantic, lyrics that reflected the idyllic garden in my head. I thought ‘I can do that’ as you do. And here I am, a Mental Health Nurse with a soul searching but, I believe, uplifting debut CD coloured by some wonderfully accomplished musicians.’ – Maddison’s Thread.
Just Millie – ‘Not Ok’
Performing since the age of 13, Just Millie has an enchanting voice. She packs a punch with her acoustic guitar, harmony looping pedals and an electronic kick drum. Her new AA side single ‘Lanterns/ Not Ok’ is a homage to believing in the power to succeed, being determined, beating the odds, going against the grain and proving people wrong. This girl shows early potential to become a voice of her generation. Expect the unexpected, she’s not your average singer songwriter; she’s Just Millie.
Paul Garthwaite – ‘Thorn From A Rose’
‘Thorn From A Rose’ is taken from the album Up Close And Personal recorded at Peter Gabriel’s Real World studios. The album features 10-, 14- and 22-string guitars made by Andy Manson. The 14- and the 22-string guitars are the only ones in the world. ‘I have always been fascinated by solo guitarists such as Segovia and Joe Pass and I had the good fortune to see Isaac Guillory when I was 19. This experience changed my life. He had everything: great songs, great voice immaculate arrangements and he is quite simply one of the finest musicians I have ever had the pleasure to see. I have seen him play about 40 times and every time he was stunning,’ says Paul.