Alex de Grassi
Alex de Grassi
Born in Japan in 1952 and now living in Northern California, Alex de Grassi has been a significant voice in the world of acoustic guitar for more than 40 years. He has performed around the world including at Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Centre, Montreux Jazz Festival, Belfast International Festival and the Bath Guitar Festival. Inspired by American and British Isles folk and blues artists in his early teens, Alex’s musical pursuits soon expanded to encompass classical, jazz, and world music. His debut 1978 recording, Turning: Turning Back is cited by Acoustic Guitar magazine among their top ten essential fingerstyle recordings. As well as subsequent albums, he has received commissions to compose and score for film.
Named after John McCormick and written by Alex in 1986
Alex says: “The piece is named for a guitarist and folk musician for whom I produced a recording back in the 80s. John McCormick was also a big fan of Bert and John, and it seemed like a good way to extend the tradition of the British Isles folk & blues scene that we had both been immersed in as young players. I like to think there’s a bit of Bert’s sound in this piece.”
“It was a joy to be able to participate. Bert’s music was not only a huge inspiration to me as a young player, but also helped through some difficult times as a teenager. I’m glad to see this project and looking forward to learning more about the Foundation.
“I first heard Bert Jansch’s music as a teenager growing up in Palo Alto in the San Francisco Bay Area of Northern California. I spent many a night listening and learning from his solo recordings as well as his work with John Renbourn and the group Pentangle. I got to meet him in the early 80s at San Francisco Airport when I drove him around town and then to his gig at the Great American Music Hall. As my own career advanced, I toured a bit with John Renbourn and learned more about the early days of their work together. Bert was a huge influence on my development as a player!”