“Question: When is an acoustic guitar not an acoustic guitar?
Answer: When it’s in the hands of New York visionary Preston Reed.” Total Guitar
One of the most influential solo guitarists of the last two decades, Preston Reed has captivated audiences the world over with his two handed integrated percussive style and directly influenced many of today’s contemporary acoustic players such as Andy McKee, Jon Gomm, Usman Riaz and Kaki King. You really can’t speak about the current acoustic guitar scene without including Preston Reed.
Reed fuses chord-based grooves, soaring melodic runs and polyrhythmic percussion that integrates the breathtaking potential of the guitar body. The power and depth of his original and timeless compositions are as unique as the man’s execution, as blues, rock, funk and jazz meet, interlock and attack in a sonic brew that is most likely unlike anything you've heard from one solo guitarist before. Preston Reed doesn’t need a band. He is the band.
Originally from New York State, Reed spent many years in the U.S. guitar scene before moving to Scotland in 2000. Reed honed his craft as a fairly traditional fingerpicker, releasing five albums (beginning with 1979’s Acoustic Guitar) before unleashing his now-famous percussive style, on the MCA Records release Instrument Landing in 1989. But while being signed to a major-label meant a growing mainstream audience, it also led to Reed feeling he’d lost control over his work. After 1992’s Border Towns, he set out on his own again, independently releasing Metal in 1995, the album that would define him as a solo guitar force to be reckoned with.
The decades since, have seen Reed touring globally. In 2012, the guitarist was an irresistible force, spellbinding the UK and Europe on the 50-date Guitar Masters Tour alongside Andy McKee. He sold out twice in Singapore, charmed Irish audiences, and dropped jaws in countries as far-flung as Croatia. That year, as a popular draw on the corporate circuit, Reed’s unique skills saw him requested by global brands including Nike USA, Revolution Growth and the Dubai-based GAC Corporation while a set at the TEDGlobal conference in Edinburgh has since clocked almost two million views. 2013 saw him perform in China, Mexico, South Africa, France, the UK, and Poland. One of the major highlights of 2014 was a masterclass and performance at Berklee College of Music. At one point he expanded his shows to include a range of guitars, including electric, classical, and 12-string, his 2007 album, Spirit, featured straight-ahead solo jazz tunes on an electric archtop..
But now Reed has returned to the style he’s best known forand with a vengeance. His newly released album, In Here out There, showcases a slew of new compositions and a smattering of old favourites.
Almost thirty years after his idiosyncratic style was born, Reed’s seismic global impact has created a sea of guitarists playing in his style, many of them inspired by 1994’s hit instructional DVD, The Guitar Of Preston Reed: Expanding The Realm Of Acoustic Playing. Today at the height of his game, Reed's recordings and live performances still define the sound of the pioneering compositional guitar genre he invented over a quarter of a century ago. Put simply, Preston Reed has never sounded better.
Joe Roscoe an Anglo/Maltese singer and songwriter, with a folk/acoustic genre background was born in Malta in 1993. He launched his career in music in 2012 releasing two original songs (How I feel about you)(Side by side). Both songs reached the top of the local charts and secured him the title of ‘Malta’s best newcomer 2013’. He moved to the United Kingdom in 2014 to further his music career as well as his studies in sound engineering.
Joe is currently working on new material and is due to release his 5th single just before summer 2015. He plays as many gigs as he can get, to gain experience and confidence. He recently compiled a cd of the songs he has released to date and has had a fantastic reaction to his music.
Joe is a dedicated musician, this is something which is a big part of his life and wherever he goes his guitar is always close by. Side by side was the title of his second song and was written with his guitar in mind.
“I’ll catch you,
You’ll break my fall.
I’ll soften the blow,
Together we’ll get over this wall.
We can do anything, if we stick it out,
Side by side.”
Joe’s plans for the near future are to keep writing and playing for the people, to release his new projects and to hopefully become a well known but more importantly, a respected musician.