Guild is saddened to learn of the April 22 passing of the great Richie Havens.
Havens, 72, suffered a fatal heart attack at his home in Jersey City, N.J.
From small coffee shops to mammoth music festivals, Havens distinctively soulful voice and powerfully rhythmic acoustic style mesmerized countless listeners live and on record. He is perhaps most noted for the stunning solo performance with which he opened the three-day Woodstock Festival in August 1969.
Born in New York City on Jan. 21, 1941, Havens rose from the Greenwich Village scene of the late 1950s and early 1960s to become one of the folk music world’s preeminent artists. He scored major chart success as a thoughtful interpreter of songs written by others, including Bob Dylan’s “Just Like a Woman” and the Beatles’ “Here Comes the Sun.”
Havens remained a busy and beloved performer and recording artist for the rest of his life. He enjoyed a 45-year touring and performing career and released more than 20 albums.
Guild Guitars celebrates the life and work of Richie Havens, the greatest and most enduring ambassador of its name and instruments. Throughout his life, he touched the lives of many generations of players and fans with his music, and he will be missed.
Flatpick guitarist Bob Minner, who is currently touring with country artist Tim McGraw, recently sat with Guild to chat about how he got into playing guitar and what he thinks about the new Orpheum Mahogany 12-Fret Slope Shoulder Dreadnought.
Doyle Bramhall II has been on tour with Eric Clapton’s band on a series of dates throughout the United States and Europe this year, and that road recently ran through New York for Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival.
Bramhall actually took the stage for a solo performance on a Guild 12-string guitar, which he played upside down.
Australian rocker Orianthi is featured on At: Guitar Center’s latest episode, performing “How do you Sleep” with the help of guitarist Cyril Niccolai from the Fairchilds. Niccolai is using his Guild D-55 in Antique Burst on the cut, which appears on Orianthi’s newly released album Heaven in this Hell.
Country act Big & Rich were one of last night’s nominees for an American Country Music Award. Unfortunately, they were edged out by Thompson Square but it reminded us of how much we like this video for faith-based hit “That’s Why I Pray” off 2012′s Hillbilly Jedi.
“I think ‘That’s Why I Pray’ takes on issues that you don’t typically hear about in songs. It comes right at it, right out of the box,” said Rich. “When you are in Country music or any type of music outside of Christian music, you really have to be careful how you say things because you don’t want to seem like you are preaching at people. Those songs may not get listened to on Country radio. I think this song comes at the subject from the right point of view that pretty much everyone can relate to, regardless of politics, religion or background. Pretty much everybody wakes up in the morning afraid to turn on the news and afraid of what is happening in the world that seems completely out of control. You can do all the charity work in the world, give all the money you can, tithe 100 percent if you want to, and there’s still things going on that are out of our control. The only thing you can do about it is pray. We need to pray that things will get better and believe that they will get better.”
We just recently came across this Jimmy Kimmel performance by singer/songwriter Ryan Bingham, who shot to fame when he won an Oscar and a Grammy for “Weary Kind,” the theme song for award-winning film Crazy Heart.
In this late night clip below, the gravely-voiced Bingham performs “Western Shore,” the second track on his latest album Tomorrowland. Bingham’s latest effort marks his fourth studio album, but his first self-produced and a move from the Lost Highway label to his own indie company, Aster Bingham Records. Order the album here.