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[Controversial] Why is there not any great US guitarists?

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Comments

  • Wim GlennWim Glenn oƃɐɔᴉɥƆModerator 503
    Posts: 1,081
    Oh man that archtopeddy vid was a laugh. The snippet of of olivier look very familiar for some reason .. it was me filming that at samois 2009, yeah!
  • Al WatskyAl Watsky New JerseyVirtuoso
    Posts: 440
    I think the answer to the OP's question is simple.
    GJ is a more or less regional style and that region does not include the US.
    GJ was a form of Swing which has been superseded by later more elastic rhythmic feels.
    American players were for the most part not interested in the old Dixieland tunes and were for the most part happy to move on from there.
    Until recently this style was not easy to hear, see or learn.
    I can remember my own reaction to Django after listening intently to other later Jazz guitarists.
    I was interested and knew that I was listening to an artist , but after Charlie Christian, Larry Coryell, Grant Green, George Benson and yes my man Freddy Green and Sugar Foot from Ohio Players , that whole swing thing was old hat.
    Pretty sure my whole generation felt the same way, more or less.
    If Django had lived he would have moved on too I think, we would be less rooted in nostalgia and more in the present.
    A drummer less genera that is string based ? That was essentially a dance music. Thats pretty old timey.
    GJ is a European music, nothing wrong with European folks being the best at it.
    Trends come and go, now that the music is being popularized young musicians are coming up that change the face of the music.
    Some of them might be Americans ?
  • redbluesredblues ✭✭
    Posts: 456
    Nice response Al, thanks for that
  • AmundLauritzenAmundLauritzen ✭✭✭✭
    Posts: 236
    *RANT ALERT! PROCEED READING AT YOUR OWN RISK* :P

    There seems to be this notion in jazz that you can't go back in time, to play what has been played before. It think this is what prevents many people from playing gypsy jazz. As for me it's simple: I heard Django and it was settled: I got to play it!
    I also play newer jazz styles on the side, but not nearly as much anymore as I play Djangos music.

    To me, the jazz from different eras each have they qualities. I do find that bebop and beyond can get a bit "heady" and sometimes lose the sensitivity whereas gypsy jazz is more down to earth. It's more primitive harmonically, but it just hits the spot for me and that's all that matters.

    I think the "got to be hip and keep up with the times" attitude is something you find in every country. In Norway where I live it is the norm. There are not so many bebop players as there are "experimental" players and you can count the Django style players on two hands. The active performing jazz manouche bands you can count perhaps on one hand.

    To me, Djangos music is timeless. Not constrained in any way. To me, it sounds modern! Particularly Djangos last recordings. He did some real hip stuff some times, and this is particularly evident in his compositions. There were typical jazz compositions, but most of them draw from a wide range of styles. I think the nostalgia of swing fused with the exotic flavors of traditional gypsy music, impressionism and a little flamenco influences is what attracts people to Djangos music. And the characteristic Selmer tone that pulls the heart strings, rubs your soul just right.

    Please bear with me ranting here :) Just had to get that off my chest...
  • Good rant IMO
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • anthon_74anthon_74 Marin county, CA✭✭✭✭ Alta Mira M 01
    Posts: 561
    I second everything you said amundLauritzen. well put.
  • Russell LetsonRussell Letson Prodigy
    Posts: 239
    Re: being old hat.

    J.S. Bach was so considered, even while he was still alive. But we (collectively) learned better.

    (We may still have been turned into newts, though.)
  • redbluesredblues ✭✭
    Posts: 456
    I was recently asked "If you could resurrect one musical artist, who would it be?"

    -J.S. Bach (without hesitation)
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