Welcome to the Guitar Page!

Ken Fackler

| My albums/CDs | transcriptions |

 

I have played guitar since the age of 12, first learning to read music and then listening to all styles of music. Reading guitar parts on sight or at least quickly is a skill that has developed over many years. While it is a wonderfully useful skill, it is easy to rely too much on sight reading. In challenging pieces memory is a necessity in order to focus fully on the music.

 

My early years of reading scores and practicing with method books were followed by intensive practice in ensembles with friends and later at Berklee College of Music where I studied Applied Performance. It was only after graduation that I began to focus on classical guitar exclusively.

 

Spain, a country rich in history and romance, beckoned. I traveled to nearly every region of this beautiful part of the world where I studied briefly with Master José Tomás and the late José Luís Gonzalez. It was this musical mastery and passion for music which helped me to appreciate the guitar and its roots more fully. The recording Music for Two Guitars was a result of the sojourn in Spain where Jeffrey Hacker and I performed a number of concerts in southeastern Spain.

 

I was most fortunate to attend a master class series in Castres, France, that featured the late Antonio Lauro, Paco Peña, and John Williams. Many musicians and stops at performances during this time left long lasting impressions. A number of the pieces that I recorded on Easy Guitar grew out of the experiences there including the ones arranged by Anton Steuxner who I met at Castres.

 

While in Spain, I attended many superb concerts and one in particular was pivotal. A performance given by the Egyptian National Orchestra in Alcoy opened my ears more fully again to world music, just as had the Ravi Shankar concert several years earlier at Berklee College of Music. Revived then was my memory of an informal preformance of music of the vino by a professor of Urdu at Harvard. I had spoken to him about his performance and music as it related to literature of the region and he indicated that a knowledge of one of the languages in question would be required to carry out any meaningful investigation. It was as Gurdjieff had alluded years before that languages would be necessary for any meaningful journey... and thus, the recording Crystal Lanterns-Amber Streams. It was about this time I realized that learning foreign languages fascinated me.

 

It is perhaps not surprising then that I have lived in Spain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Ecuador and Malaysia and have traveled extensively in many of these places on this journey.