Shadow Language Electric Guitar Quartet at The Electric Lodge

Shadow Language Electric Guitar Quartet

Ken Rosser’s Shadow Language Electric Guitar Quartet is playing a show at The Electric Lodge in Venice, CA Thursday April 22 at 8 pm. In addition to the repertoire from their premier performance (see my interviews with Ken) they will be performing a piece by Nick Didkovsky and a world premier, Rooms of Marble and Red Grass by composer Stefano Giannotti.

If you are a fan of modern electric guitar music be sure to check this out. SLEGQ is pushing the boundaries of the electric guitar and contemporary chamber music. If you think “it’s all been done” on the electric guitar… think again!

Guitarist Ken Rosser

Part 6: SLGQ Interview – Ken explains ‘Parallels’ and demos wild and crazy Ebow techniques…

OK, Ebow fans…this is the clip you’ve been waiting for. At about 1:10 Ken demonstrates the prepared guitar techniques involved in Rob Wannamaker’s piece, ‘Parallels’…slides, Ebow, hair scrunchies, and BBQ skewers…I love it!

Heading into the clip I had asked Ken about the meter and tempo of the piece. To the listener it appears to have no time; a floating continuous ensemble chord; the inner voices gradually shifting the tonality. Check this one out…

Part 5: Shadow Language Guitar Quartet interview

In Part 5 of our conversation Ken Rosser describes each of the pieces from the Shadow Language Guitar Quartet debut performance…

Follow Me by Paul Lansky
American Thighs by Betsey Biggs
Time Enough by Mick Goodrick
Parallels by Rob Wannamaker
and finally…
Motormouth by Fred Frith
Ken describes the musical character of each composition and the unique challenges presented by the performance techniques.

Part 1: Shadow Language Guitar Quartet interview

The Shadow Language Guitar Quartet is an electric guitar ensemble organized by guitarist Ken Rosser. This extraordinary group of musicians recently debuted at the Eagle Rock Center for the Arts in Los Angeles, performing pieces by Paul Lansky, Betsey Biggs, Mick Goodrick, Rob Wannamaker, and Fred Frith.

Electric guitar ensembles are something I have always been involved with. The instrument’s iconoclastic nature makes it a versatile tool in the hands of a skilled composer and an exceptional ensemble.

In this chapter Ken discusses his longstanding interest in guitar chamber music and the origins of this group. In the chapters that follow he discusses the other musicians and the repertoire of their debut gig. In the final chapters Ken demonstrates some of the unique techniques involved in Rob Wannamaker’s piece and gives us a taste of Mick Goodrick’s music.