Classical Guitar on Steroids
Lippert Music’s very own Sean Kelly, Director of Guitar Studies, has released his third solo album on the Opening Day label called Where The Wood Meets the Wire”. Sean and I had the opportunity to speak recently at his studio. Surrounded by the guitars he used to record his new album, Sean said that this is the album he has been working towards. “My first album, The #1 Classical Guitar Album was a showcase of the greatest hits of the guitar, done in a very traditional manner. My second, Christnas Guitar, was arrangements of my favourite carols and Christmas songs. This one is the blending of the acoustic and electric music I love so much. Where the Wood Meets the Wire, mixes everything I love about music. The beauty of the nylon stings with the electric, used to spice things up”
And spice it up Sean has! The opening track on the new album is Adelita by Francisco Tárrega, a Spanish guitarist and composer who lived from 1852-1909. Sean recorded this piece on The #1 Classical Guitar Album. His original recording was a very reflective, almost melancholic take. Not so on the new one! Right away the tempo has been kicked up a few notches, with bass and drums added to give the piece an entirely new feel. Sean adds the electric guitar the third time the melody is played. From there, it is moments away from adding in some high pitched harmonies on the electric, leading into some free-wheeling soloing.
While most of the album crosses over from the classics into rock, one certainly goes the opposite way, Gowan’s A Criminal Mind or as Sean, in keeping with the Spanish titles of the other tracks, Una Mente Criminale. A top notch arrangement.
The last track on the album is unique for a Sean Kelly album as it is the first selection to feature vocals, in this case, the voice of his friend, Brian Vollmer, performing the seasonal Ave Maria. Brian, better known as the vocalist for heavy metal act Helix, puts in a performance bordering on the operatic, while Sean’s guitar whirls around the voice with chords and licks. A fine end to a fine album.
Check out Sean on You Tube, where he discuses the album and where you can see him play Adelita, all in the comfort of Long & McQuade, out on Bloor Street.
All three of Sean’s albums are available at the front desk at Lippert Studios.