A Harp Guitar Music Recording
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The Harp Guitar Collective & Friends
Two years in the making, this is an all-new "tribute album" to our friend, beloved harp-guitarist/composer Stephen Bennett.
We surprised him with it at the 10th annual Harp Guitar Gathering, which Stephen founded in 2003.
An unprecedented project in every way, featuring all new recordings that include new inspirational pieces written expressly for Stephen, cover versions of favorite Bennett tunes and special dedicated selections – with a grand finale featuring nearly sixty SB fans playing along with one of Stephen’s original recordings from 1999.
Includes 24-page keepsake booklet featuring photos and tribute essays from the 14 soloists, testimonials from the 48 additional musicians performing on the grand finale, with an Introduction by Gregg Miner, Preface by John Thomas, and Foreword by Andy McKee.
"Why does Stephen Bennett’s music have such universal appeal?
"The Water Is Wide is an homage not just to a musician but to an unusual instrument. Stephen Bennett is one of the greatest practitioners of the harp guitar, which has a separate "arm" with extra unfretted bass strings that can be used for plucking. The 15 tracks are performed by musicians for whom Bennett has been mentor, friend, and inspiration. "The Tunesmith," composed and performed by Gregg Miner (who also produced the CD), ebbs and flows like water, capturing the impressionistic quality of Bennett's pieces, and is played on his first Kathy Wingert harp guitar. Andy Wahlberg's "Bennett Diction" is intricate and jazzy, while Don Alder's "Man from Lady Lane" exploits the rumbling dronelike effects and lush sound that are the special characteristics of this kind of guitar. "G Wiz" by Frank Doucette uses "Bennett tuning" (which Doucette explains is characterized by a high G), while Hirokatsu Takai's Asian-influenced "Yokohama SB" emphasizes high-pitched tones. Other musicians play Bennett's compositions: Pete Bradshaw gives a lovely rendition of "Waltz for a Maple Tree" and Larry Berwald (resonator) and Gregg Miner (harp guitar) duet on "I Knew It Was You." Tommy Emmanuel's arrangement of the traditional "Aura Lee" is a standout, stuffed with superfast runs, jazzy sections, mixed tempos, and Hawaiian-sounding slides. To top it off, the title track extends Bennett's original 1999 recording of "The Water Is Wide" to include 58 musicians, many of whom are regulars at the annual Harp Guitar Gathering, which Bennett founded - all obsessed with this fascinating instrument." © Céline Keating, Minor7th.com
DVDs by Stephen Bennett, John Doan, Muriel Anderson, Andy McKee,
Stacy Hobbs, Tom Shinness, Dan LaVoie, James Kline, Larry
Berwald, Bill Dutcher, Gregg Miner, Pasquale Taraffo
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