|Fredericksburg Songwriters' Showcase||Stephen Bennett|
"It would be no stretch to say that Stephen Bennett is one of the seminal guitar players of our generation. Equally at home flatpicking, fingerpicking, or crafting intricate melodies on any variety of harp guitars, Bennett has just turned 50; we can only hope the next 50 years sound as nice as what we've heard so far." From the critics (October 2006, Review of newest cd at Minor7th.com)
With his stellar musicianship, a relaxed stage presence and quick wit, Stephen has performed throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, France, England, Belgium, Italy, Sweden, Germany, Holland, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan. He has appeared on the radio show A Prairie Home Companion and is often on the list of performers at The Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas. With fifteen self-produced CD recordings to his credit at this writing, a new Stephen Bennett recording is probably in the works.
Aside from his work on the six-string guitar and National steel, Stephen is also one of the world's premiere performers on the Harp Guitar, an instrument he inherited from his great-grandfather. As a composer and arranger, he has created an enduring repertoire and a significant body of recorded work for this instrument. He also organized and hosted the worlds first harp guitar convention the Harp Guitar Gathering held November 2003 in Williamsburg, Virginia. This event has continued and the 5th Gathering will be held again in Williamsburg in 2007.
Stephen Bennett was born in Oregon , grew up in New York and has lived in Virginia for the better part of the last three decades. Since his 1987 first-place win at the National Flatpicking Championship in Winfield , Kansas (The Walnut Valley Festival), he has become known as a versatile fingerstyle and flatpicking guitarist who consistently garners critical praise and audience enthusiasm for his recordings and live performances.
Aside from his work on the six-string guitar, Stephen is also one of the world's premiere performers on the Harp Guitar, an instrument he indirectly inherited from his great-grandfather. As a composer and arranger, he has created an enduring repertoire and a significant body of recorded work for this instrument. Slide work on his 1930 National resophonic steel guitar is also an important part of Stephen's instrumental diversity.
The image of Stephen Bennett embracing his harp guitar is the one that tends to linger. The fact that Stephen is only too happy to champion the cause of the harp guitar may inadvertently obscure his abilities on the six-string instrument. In what is becoming known as the Golden Age of Guitar Luthiery, it's easy to overlook the fact that this is also the Golden Age of Guitar Playing. With six strings or more, as one of the most original and prolific composers and arrangers for the guitar on the current scene, Stephen Bennett is clearly a part of the latter heritage.
Stephen Bennett's music on Amazon.com
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