you are one of those fanatical Master’s level guitar scholars or an
unabashed record geek, chances are you might not have heard of English
folk-blues hero Davy Graham.
it’s a guarantee that if you’re reading these words you are well aware of the
many legends who cite him as a primary inspiration to their own artistry on the
six-string. Jimmy Page is one of them. Ray Davies, too. The late, great Bert
Jansch once stated about his “absolute hero” that “he was a hard
man to hold a conversation with, but he knew how to play the guitar.”
Fellow British folk giant Martin Carthy hailed him as “the one everyone followed
and watched”, while Paul Simon–who covered Graham’s classic instrumental
piece “Anji” on Simon and Garfunkel’s 1966 LP Sounds of Silence–has
cited him as “probably England’s greatest guitarist” at one point in
the lot of them were indeed right in their adulation of this underrated maestro
of the acoustic guitar, whose experimental modal tunings helped to bring his
fusion of jazz, blues and folk to new worlds of sound, predating the likes of
Robbie Basho, Peter Walker and, more recently, Sir Richard Bishop, in his
seamless abilities to interweave Indian and Arabic influences into the fabric
of notes and scales that fell across the fretboard as effortlessly as one rubs
his or her eyes in the morning.
first-ever anthology dedicated to the totality of Graham’s career on the
UK-based Les Cousins imprint gathers together three discs’ worth of “lost
tapes”, 54 tracks of varying fidelity that collects a variety of club
recordings, studio outtakes, radio broadcasts and even acetates from his first
label audition, all of which span across five decades in performance.
years following his unfortunate loss to lung cancer at the spry age of 68, Davy
Graham finally gets the overview of his dynamic and influential career he so
richly deserves. Be it fans, students or curiosity seekers of the acoustic
guitar, Anthology is an indispensable
character study of this unsung titan of British folk whose name should be as
recognizable as those he inspired along the way.
DOWNLOAD: “Anji”, “Broonzy Stomp”,
“Blues Raga”, “All of Me”, “New Junkies Blues” RON