PAT METHENY puts down the guitar and lets others play for him

4. May 2021

Pat Metheny

PAT METHENY legt die Gitarre aus der Hand und lässt andere für sich spielen

Hardly any other musician has revolutionized the electric guitar in the last four and a half decades as fundamentally as Pat Metheny. With his Synclavier guitar and various other technical innovations, but also with his cinematic imagery, he has created countless sound epics. On his new album "Road To The Sun" he does not play himself for long stretches, but lets play.

The record consists of three parts. In the first suite "Four Paths Of Light" the classical virtuoso Jason Vieaux steps in, the six-part Ritel suite is interpreted by the renowned L. A. Guitar Quartet, and only the last piece from the pen of the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt is played by Metheny himself. The names give it away - "Road To The Sun" serves neither jazz nor jazz rock, but it is music for classical guitar.

This is not the first time Metheny has been drawn to classical music. Back in 1987, he transposed Steve Reich's "Electric Counterpoint", layering up to twelve guitar tracks with astonishing precision. But "Road To The Sun" is different, because this time it's mostly his own compositions played by other guitarists. "A lot of my music is free improvised playing," Metheny explains of his motivations. "I've written songs that three staves are enough for, like 'Song For Bilbao,' but you can still stretch it out to three-quarters of an hour ...

Pat Metheny: Road to the Sun, Pt. 1

Read more in the current issue ...