A glimpse at just some of the artists performing at the 2016 Fretboard Summit. There will be many more announced soon... and some surprise guests.
Banjo innovator Danny Barnes continues to astound us with each new project he undertakes, whether he's playing a classic Don Stover tune on his vintage Gibson TB-4, playing alongside Bill Frisell, writing insanely catchy original songs or performing in the Test Apes. The Bad Livers veteran is the recipient of the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass and was the cover story of the Fretboard Journal's 35th issue. He also penned a memorable interview with Frisell in the FJ's fouth issue. A true visionary and groundbreaker, we can't wait to hear what he has in store for the Summit.
First internationally recognized as lead guitarist in Beatle Paul McCartney's band Wings, Laurence Juber has since established himself as a world-renowned guitar virtuoso, composer and arranger. Juber, known to his fans as "LJ," has released 23 solo albums which spotlight Juber’s unique touch and tone on solo acoustic guitar. During this year's Summit, Juber will perform a solo set and participate in an interactive session with Martin's Dick Boak entitled, "Guitarmania to Beatlemania: The Evolution of the Acoustic Guitar."
Bob Minner is a world-class acoustic flatpicking guitarist as well as the longtime rhythm guitarist for country superstar Tim McGraw. He is an accomplished guitarist, winning major contests in the '80s and has developed a unique sound all his own. Minner was featured in the Fretboard Journal's 34th issue and also was the subject of one of our video shoots where he played a contemporary Ken Hooper guitar and compared it to his 1942 Gibson J-45.
Della Mae's Courtney Hartman is a Fretboard Summit alum, having performed both a solo set and alongside Bryan Sutton at our first event. We couldn't resist asking Hartman back, as her flatpicking is world-class (she'll be teaching a class or two to Summit attendees during the weekend if you need pointers) and her original songs are drop dead gorgeous.
An inventive soloist and sensitive accompanist, Anthony Wilson has provided texture and authority both on stage and in recording sessions for jazz legends such as Mose Allison, Bobby Hutcherson, Madeleine Peyroux, Bennie Wallace, Joe Sample, Al Jarreau, Harold Land, the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra. Since the late 1980s he has been a member of his father’s jazz orchestra, assuming the leadership of the ensemble since the maestro’s passing in 2014.
While his footing is firmly in the jazz idiom, Wilson pivots with ease into other genres. Over the last decade, he’s been part of sessions and performances with a diverse roster of artists, including Paul McCartney, Willie Nelson, Leon Russell, Aaron Neville and Barbra Streisand. The Fretboard Journal shot a memorable session with Anthony's Seasons Quartet in 2014 and we adore his new record, Frogtown.
During Bryan Sutton’s 2015 IBMA Guitarist of the Year award speech, he spotlighted 15 great, young guitarists to look out for. We’re proud to have a few of his favorites at this year’s Summit, including Molly Tuttle. Tuttle literally grew up at Gryphon Stringed Instruments in the Bay Area, where her dad, Jack, is a fiddle instructor. She’s now living in Nashville (Billy Strings, another FJ favorite, is a roommate) with a Berklee degree under her belt. Her playing is impeccable and her voice is instantly memorable.
Grant Gordy & Joe K. Walsh
Guitarist Grant Gordy and mandolin virtuoso Joe K. Walsh are two rising stars in the world of bluegrass. It's no wonder: Gordy formerly served as lead guitarist in David Grisman's Quintet, while Walsh performed in Joy Kills Sorrow and the Gibson Brothers. Today, these young players are part of Darol Anger's improv ensemble Mr. Sun but what excites us the most is watching them perform as a duo (as they did at the Fretboard Journal) and as solo acts.
Though New York’s Matt Munisteri has yet to receive the full Fretboard Journal feature treatment (we did shoot a video with him, as well as a podcast), he’s one of our all-time favorite guitarists. Munisteri can deftly reference the music of Bill Monroe, Willard Robison or Brian Wilson, making him the perfect foil for whatever crazy guitar themes we come up with during the Summit.
Portland, Oregon's Eric Skye is one fingerstyle guitarist we can't get enough of, whether he's performing solo, with Mark Goldenberg or (gasp) with a pick in his new duo with Tim Connell. For this year's Summit set, Skye is plotting something truly audacious: He'll be playing Miles Davis' Kind of Blue album from start to finish on solo guitar.
The L-5 contingent will be strong at this year’s Summit, thanks in part to Bay Area guitarist Tony Marcus. You may know Marcus as one of the guitarists in R. Crumb’s Cheap Suit Serenaders or for his work in Cats & Jammers; he has also toured and recorded with Geoff Muldaur. He's a perennial favorite around these parts and one of the most tasteful jazz guitarists around. Marcus and his partner Patrice Haan will perform together as Leftover Dreams, turning in gorgeous renditions of tunes from the Great American Songbook.
We'll keep adding more artists and surprise guests as the event gets closer. Your admission to the Summit grants you full access to all Fretboard Summit concerts, sessions, exhibits, parties and panels.