James Blackshaw

Blowing minds with 12 strings

English 12-string guitar player James Blackshaw is so amazingly wonderful it gave me the urge to start this blog back up again. With influences ranging from classic guitar to flamenco/sephardic and indian art music, he uses structural and modal ideas from minimalistic art music and layers improvised themes on top of them. The result lands him perfectly in the neoclassical pop genre (or whatever it's called) with names like Ólafur Arnalds, Nils Frahm and many more, but with a sometimes rather sharp edge of skilled playfulness.

Check out the sampler above. The very best of his works however, seems to be 2006's Waking Into Sleep - Göteborg 27.05.06 ( Spotify Link), which truly brings forth the raw and massive sound of the 12-string and holding back the movie soundtrack feel of later recordings. If you want to know why this guy stands out of the crowd, listen to that!

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Artist link Spotify

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