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

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  • anthon_74anthon_74 Marin county, CA✭✭✭✭ Alta Mira M 01
    Posts: 561
    Umm excuse me, but if I may chime in -

    Shortly after returning from Django in June (where I saw Stephane Wremble, gonzalo Barguera, And other great players live and close up), I went out and saw Paul Mehling of "hot club sf".

    As far as I'm concerned, he was every bit as good as each and every one of them. in fact, I found his phrasing as or more melodic, with often even more authentic emotion and passion than any one of them.

    the only knock on him has been his disinterest in high-octane super speed playing, which is no longer accurate, because he finally succumbed to peer pressure and adds some speedy stuff to his repertoire.

    I think what you're really saying is - why aren't there any Americans as well known, or famous amongst Gypsy Jazzers as the european counterparts.

    I agree with Paul - Your post is loaded, and makes many assumptions that aren't necessarily true.

    cheers
  • redbluesredblues ✭✭
    Posts: 456
    I tried to put something tangible in there, who could book the Atellier Charonne, Denis couldn't, Alfonso could, Diknu could, Oli could, Adrien could.

    And I agree @pas it is a lousy criteria, but if the best this discussion can come up with is Alfonso and Denis, it's a lousy category. Where are the kids from e.g. Alberta or Juneau or San Fran?

    @anton I love Pazzo, don't get me wrong, where is the raw talent?
  • PassacagliaPassacaglia Madison, WI✭✭✭✭
    Posts: 1,333
    redblues wrote:
    I tried to put something tangible in there, who could book the Atellier Charonne, Denis couldn't, Alfonso could, Diknu could, Oli could, Adrien could.

    And I agree @pas it is a lousy criteria, but if the best this discussion can come up with is Alfonso and Denis, it's a lousy category. Where are the kids from e.g. Alberta or Juneau or San Fran?

    @anton I love Pazzo, don't get me wrong, where is the raw talent?

    Red, I was working from your question:
    my question is why is there no North American guitarists who can compare with European guitarists in this genre?

    So, that's where my mind is. All I can tell you is that I've sat next to an incredible player (or dozen, fireside), who will probably never be known to you. As to booking the Atelier Charonne, doesn't it make pretty obvious sense that Euro players will easily fill the bill?

    I really don't know what you're asking, Red, sorry. You mention kids - are you asking something about the "young lions" like Moignard, why don't we have an equivalent thing here? If so, I would just put it down to culture - absolutely impossible for me to see a scene equivalent to Paris here. Though I've never been to Paris. I've only lived it as a kind of domaine perdu, before I've even gone, for all the decades I've been around.

    No, no scene here like the kind that gave Benoit and Adrien and the many others of that "new wave" ilk here. You also won't find a lot of guinea fowl stuffed with autumn fruits, a sauce enriched with its liver. Though not for lack of trying. :shock:

    Is it kids you're trying to compare? If so, why?

    OK, I'm seriously abusing my wife's goodwill. Signing off, gents.
    -Paul

    pas encore, j'erre toujours.
  • anthon_74anthon_74 Marin county, CA✭✭✭✭ Alta Mira M 01
    Posts: 561
    You want to talk raw young talent, I met a kid at Django in june last year,I can't remember his name, but was only about 14 or something and pretty amazing.

    Paul, do you remember the kid who played really loud, (he had a D hole Gitane of some kind) and hot dogged quite a bit on rhythm, but kind of mellowed as the week went by. I would say, in about 2 or 3 years, he's going to be ridiculous.

    In any event, I teach kids to play rock and roll guitar, and I have recently begun teaching them Django as well. Who knows, maybe in about 4 years, you will see an uprising in Marin county of young guitar playing talent...

    As for Pazzo, I don't know what you mean by raw talent. I first met him about 7 years ago, and then didn't see him play for 4 or 5 years, and when I saw him again, he was in an entirely different stratosphere as he had been ... I would say some of us make our biggest leaps later in life.
    but like I said, I don't know what you mean by raw talent.

    Cheers
  • Michael BauerMichael Bauer Chicago, ILProdigy Selmers, Busatos and more…oh my!
    Posts: 1,002
    The question could be easily asked, "Who among those you name could get a regular gig at the Green Mill? Alfonso can, but none of the others you mention could. It a matter of name recognition as mush as chops. Wrembel may be French, but he became a great player here. he has gotten, and kept, a job doing movie and advertising music, in addition to his own great stuff.

    It's like if I pose the question: who in gypsy jazz can play as well as I do, has won a high-level race in Grand Prix Legends, has driven the Nurgurgring (and passed a Porsche in an Opel!) and the original Watkins Glen circuit, has my knowledge of the American Civil War and the Bill Russell era Boston Celtics, has read every book by Bill Kinsella, and cooks pasta with anyone? The answer, statistically, is probably no one. But so what? When you define the criteria of success in advance, you can make anyone a star. It means nothing.

    I will say the sheer numbers of great players in Europe is much larger, but we didn't grow up with this stuff. We almost all came to it very late. But I've seen these young kids coming along the last few years at Django in June that are growing up playing gypsy jazz, and well, and that will change things down the road.

    People like different music here. French jazz/gypsy jazz has a very small fan base, and almost no recogntion in the media. Shit, other than Peter Green, Europe never produced a great blues guitarist, either (Do not, I repeat, do not say the name Eric Clapton with a straight face.) That's probably most of it. Our great players play rock, country, jazz, blues, and r&b. I think that's most of it.

    I really did appreciate the sincerity of the question, but it was framed with the answer already in mind.
    I've never been a guitar player, but I've played one on stage.
  • klaatuklaatu Nova ScotiaProdigy Rodrigo Shopis D'Artagnan, 1950s Jacques Castelluccia
    Posts: 1,659
    And no one has mentioned Justin Bieber?
    Benny

    "It's a great feeling to be dealing with material which is better than yourself, that you know you can never live up to."
    -- Orson Welles
  • BarengeroBarengero Auda CityProdigy
    Posts: 527
    Oh, my gosh, what a crappy discussion. Didn´t you ever notice that, from a GJ point of view, Alfonso Ponticelli is a Blues guitar player and a showman, quite the very reverse to Gipsy Jazz.
  • pinkgarypinkgary ✭✭✭
    Posts: 282
    Shit, other than Peter Green, Europe never produced a great blues guitarist, either (Do not, I repeat, do not say the name Eric Clapton with a straight face.)


    Mick Taylor is worlds ahead of Peter Green....
  • lewshellewshel Boston, MANew
    Posts: 12
    John Jorgenson.
    And also, while he is not US by birth, but who plays here, Tommy Emmanuel, who
    can play with anyone (Joscho, Jorgenson, Jake Shimabukuro) in any style.
    LAS
  • Anthony...the kid at DiJ was named Max. He was quite good and was closer to 16. Good kid, great player, and will be an amazing player if he sticks with it.
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