Yaron Deutsch Performance

It has been fascinating to watch the expansion of electric guitar into the “classical” realm over the last 30 or 40 years. I have been privileged to have had interesting and enlightening discussions with two guitarist/composers working in this field: Tim Brady and James Moore. Israel has been exporting excellent guitarists for a while now: Gilad Hekselman, Oz Noy to name but two. Add to the list Yaron Deutsch. Working in the classical/new music realm he turns in an astonishing performance here, demonstrating a wealth of extended techniques, developed in the improvised music realm, which are showing up more and more in composed works.

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Jeff Beck RIP

I was pretty sure he would outlive me. He was only four years older and in better shape. I am having a hard time imagining a world without him.

He eschewed the “live fast, die young” credo held dear by so many of his rock star peers. He was about the work, when he deigned to work; often he preferred his hot rods. He was in that select club of musicians who grow, change, and experiment as they age: Jim Hall, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Miles Davis, I run out of names pretty quickly. He was the one that got away; the only player I would have loved to interview, or even meet, but never got the chance. (I did get to hold one of his guitars in the Hard Rock Cafe vault in London).


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The Markus Reuter Interview

Happy New Year. My interview with Markus Reuter is long overdue. He has been a major part of the modern guitar community for decades, from his brilliant work with The Stickmen and versions of King Crimson, to his recordings ranging from ambient to prog, to his terrific podcast featuring a number of modern guitarists. He has worked with Tim Motzer, Adrian Belew, Robert Fripp and Mark Wingfield among others. Our conversation ranges wide and long, covering many things of interest to the modern guitarist.

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Cool Pedal Alert: Eventide H90

Eventide’s H9 became one of those instant modern pedal classics like  the Line 6 DL4 and the EHX POG. As it basically allowed only one effect at a time, it was not uncommon to see the boards of professionals and more well off amateurs sporting two. This week Eventide revealed the H90, the equivalent of two fully loaded H9s in one box for a bit less money. But the H90 is not only twin H9s; it has some tricks of its own, with new algorithms (notably polyphonic pitch shifting) and routing options. It apparently was an epic undertaking to put together such a complex product during Covid, but that just adds to the Eventide legend.

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Cool Pedal Alert: Boss SL-2 Slicer

The original Boss Slicer, the SL-20, was one of those pedals that was ahead of its time. Not enough guitarists were into the sequencer style sounds that it was capable of producing. Or, not into it enough to sacrifice the pedalboard space it required. With the release of the SL-2 compact version of the effect, Boss is betting that the increase of forward thinking guitarists, combined with the new compact size, will entice more people to slice. 

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