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Taso Comanescu, who recently recorded some great videos for us (check them out here) came back to record some duos with Mak Grgic, this week, and while he was here we asked him to play a little on the new Lorenzo Frignani ‘1910 Manuel Ramirez’ that just arrived. So Taso recorded Tarrega’s ‘Lagrima’ on this guitar, which sounded perfect for the piece.
Taso Comanescu is just finishing his Master’s degree at USC where he studies with Scott Tennant and Adam Del Monte (he did his undergrad work with Christopher Parkening). He also plays with guitarist Mak Grgic and in an Italian folk band with the tenor Charles Castronovo. He stopped by to shoot some videos and we recorded him playing Bach’s Bouree BWV1006a on the new Gabriel Lodi guitar and and two Irish Hornpipes arranged by David Russell on the new Otto Rauch guitar. Check out Taso’s website at www.TasoGuitar.com.
It’s been another amazing year for guitar music over here at GSI and as the year wraps up we’d like to take a moment to thank all of the amazing musicians who have lent us their time and talent to create the great videos we publish every week. We obviously couldn’t do any of it without them and we are extremely grateful for the music and for the friends we’ve made over the years in our quest to record every guitar we can get our hands on! So here, in more or less reverse order of appearance, are the artists who have shared their talent with us this year:
Here is the latest video tutorial and performance of Bach’s Prelude from the first cello suite provided by our friends at EliteGuitarist.com. Few pieces receive notoriety equal to this work. The Prelude, with its serene arpeggios and inventive harmonic development, displays in an understated way the genius of Bach. Originally composed for unaccompanied cello, the piece receives new dimensions when played on the guitar as the chords sustain longer and the notes combine to produce lovely harmonies. Taso plays a beautiful 2017 Tobias Berg in spruce and Indian rosewood. Check out the many repertoire video tutorials at EliteGuitarist. You can find the rest of this tutorial here.
Check out the top 5 video picks from sales associate Andrew Lee:
1) Barrios ‘Una Limosna Por El Amor De Dios’ played by Jennifer Kim (2005 Edmund Blochinger)
When I first watched this video I thought, she’s not human…Her tremolo is literally out of this world – it really showcases the 2005 Blochinger’s capability and confirms once again that it is a world class instrument. Excited to see what comes next for this young and talented artist after her studies at Peabody with Barruecos.
When I heard we were doing staff picks, I thought: Which videos come to mind right away, without any second guesses? Which ones have recently caught my attention the most? It was tough narrowing it down to five videos, but then again my picks change every few months, so these are just the five I can loop on YouTube for days (as of now). This is also a great way to introduce friends to these videos as a sampling of the classical guitar, so enjoy:
Here’s Reyes Gonzalez playing Bach’s Prelude, BWV 999, on a lovely 1978 Manuel Velazquez cedar and Indian rosewood guitar. Reyes is GSI’s web content coordinator, and he studied classical guitar at UC Santa Barbara with Mark Covey and has also studied with Taso Comanescu. He’s currently working on expanding his classical repertoire.
2016 was a pretty epic year for videos at GSI. Of course we constantly try to improve the quality of our videos, but when the Russell Cleveland collection arrived in late 2015 we knew we had to step it up and document these historic instruments before they found new owners all around the world. To that end we brought on digital media producer Tara Stewart, who was just back from a sabbatical in Spain after producing all of Fender’s videos in Los Angeles for three years before that. We upgraded our gear so that we now shoot with three Canon 5D Mark iii cameras, and Apogee Digital lent us one of their amazing Ensemble thunderbolt interfaces. With Tara on video duties I was able to spend more time on audio and hopefully improve what I already thought was pretty good audio quality. And with two of us on the team now, we were able to double our output of videos.
As another year closes on us we once again get to look back at all the great guitars that came through GSI and especially all the great people who came through to play them for us. This year ended in a such a big way – with our acquisition of the Russell Cleveland collection – that it reminded us all just how cool it is to get to steward these amazing guitars on their way from owner (or in this case collection) to owner, and also to document them for posterity.