Stefan Grossman, The Work & Worry Interview – PART 1

Stefan_Playing_Raymonds_HealyTwo summers ago, when this blog was a good bit more active than it is now, I thought I would swing for the fences and try to get an interview with Stefan Grossman, one of my all-time acoustic guitar heroes.  Stefan wasn’t the first folkie, finger-picking guitarist that caught my ear… I had previously spent a good bit of time listening to Paul Simon, Nick Drake and Donovan.  When my friend Michael turned me on to Bert Jansch, that was it.  I was, and remain, an absolute fiend for British guitar music, a story that Stefan plays an appreciable part in. Continue reading

Shirley Collins Kickstarter Campaign

Shirley_SeppiaFew voices embody the unaffected, haunting power of folk songs like that of Shirley Collins. Though this author considers her something of an institution, it would seem that there was a long stretch of time where Shirley went underground…

Burning Bridges and Fifth Column Films are currently raising funds for a feature-length documentary on the beguiling Ms. Collins, and I would heartily encourage you to consider donating to their Kickstarter campaign.

Working On Getting W&W Back Online

Hi all - 

Thanks for stopping by.  Lots of life stuff got in the way of this little blog staying up to date, which is okay.  If you notice, everything is all higgledy-piggledy right now, but we’re working on getting it straightened out.  New posts will be infrequent but many have asked that I keep the archived material going.  So yup, I’m working on it.  Thanks for your patience.

Raymond, Founder W&W

Review: David Bernabo “Hexagon” (Limited Edition Lathe Cut 8″, 2012)

david_B_HexagonLast fall, Pittsburgh-based artist David Bernabo released a curious little item called Hexagon. It’s a short musical program on clear, lathe-cut vinyl… not so uncommon these days, but the record itself is hexagonal in shape and packaged in a machine-stitched vellum sleeve. Business as usual for David, as any who’ve followed his still young artistic career can attest. David draws from a seemingly endless pool of energy and ideas, routinely recasting his role: in visual arts as photographer, painter, videographer, and sculptor; in music as avant-rock band leader, symphonic composer, producer, ceremonial pianist and, on Hexagon, classical guitarist. In 2011, he founded the “Host Skull” brand for his new projects in collaboration with fellow musician, Will Dyar. Hexagon, which features David only, is the second item in their Host Skull Ongoing Box. Continue reading

Old Music, New People

During the past few months, we received three excellent albums of what could be described as “old timey” music. We thought it would be apt to do a quick round-up of these. We borrowed the article’s title from The Howling Kettles (it’s the tagline for their website). Continue reading

Review: Davy Graham “Anthology: 1961-2007 Lost Tapes” CD (Les Cousins, 2012)

davygrahamlostWell, I’ve had myself a very busy year thus far… lots of travelling, playing, recording etc and it has resulted in a shortage of new material here on Work & Worry.  I’ve amassed quite a backlog of very worthy discs for review consideration, and now that I’m determined to get back on that journalistic horse, one release in particular looms larger than most: a triple-disc set of previously unheard recordings from one of the most important fingerstyle guitarists of all time, Davy Graham.  Many consider Graham to be “ground zero” for the guitar-centric British folk and blues revival of the early sixties, and indeed it is hard to imagine that landscape without his influence.  Legendary guitarists like Martin Carthy, Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, Wizz Jones, and a host of others have expressed a debt of gratitude to the man who is widely considered to be the first known practitioner of DADGAD tuning, an innovation that has had a massive affect on not only solo acoustic guitar playing, but also the continuing evolution of traditional Irish and Scottish music… but Graham’s reputation is based on so much more, like his introduction of Baroque-inspired counterpoint on the folk guitar (“Anji” to this day is still considered a total game changer) and his expansive use of musical motifs from every possible source, from traditional British Isles tunes to American folk, blues and jazz, to mysterious modal compositions from the orient and beyond. Continue reading