July 10, 2019

Michael Hedges & Muriel Anderson

Good morning.

Today we're continuing our weeklong survey of American fingerstyle guitar with Michael Hedges and Muriel Anderson, who carried the style into the 21st century. Hedges uses harmonics and picking changes to make him and his guitar sound like an ensemble. His compositions feature alternate tunings and right-hand hammer-ons like Van Halen, but they’re done on an acoustic guitar. In 1997, Hedges died in a car accident at 44. His 1998 album Oracle posthumously won a Grammy for Best New Age Album (an award still given today, btw). Hedges’ earlier Aerial Boundaries includes many great tracks including a moving, bass-led cover of Neil Young's "After the Gold Rush." Muriel Anderson was the first woman to win National Fingerpicking Guitar Championship in 1989. One of her go-to instruments is a custom 21-string harp guitar, which seems exceedingly difficult to play. Her records are fascinating demonstrations of her proficiency and of the percussive power of the guitar. Her tracks have featured in films such as Vicky Cristina Barcelona, and her 1988 album Heartstrings was brought aboard NASA’s Discovery space shuttle.

Oracle by Michael Hedges (40m) Spotify / Apple Music / YouTube Music / Google Play / Tidal

Aerial Boundaries by Michael Hedges (40m) Spotify / Apple Music / YouTube Music / Google Play / Tidal

Heartstrings by Muriel Anderson (40m) Spotify / Apple Music / YouTube Music / Google Play / Tidal

Eclipse by Muriel Anderson (50m) Spotify / Apple Music / YouTube Music / Google Play / Tidal

As always, reply back with your thoughts on these recommendations and Flow State in general.

Have a nice Wednesday.

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