What's Hot With Jazz Guitar: Brian Hughes

This week we feature jazz guitarist Brian Hughes. Brian, a fellow transplanted Canadian like me, has recently moved to my neck of the woods, Los Angeles

Brian is an very accomplished player who has recorded an number of Cds, all slightly different. Some follow the 'smooth jazz' radio format while others are in a more in a straight ahead vein.

I really enjoyed listening to Brian's music as he explores various styles, from cool jazz, spicy Latin and Brazilian to funky and electric jazz. All in all, he is a fine guitarist with some very musical CDs to his credit (which he sells directly from his website at a reasonable price, BTW). He has a 'trippy' looking website too...

Online Bio:

Multi talented guitarist, composer, producer and recording artist Brian Hughes has built an international reputation dazzling audiences with his infectious blend of melodic Latin/Jazz compositions and sizzling fret work . Backed by a stellar ensemble, Brian has electrified audiences at festival and concert dates across the country. From the Montreal International Jazz Festival to the Catalina Island JazzTrax Festival, the media are accurate in saying: "Both a great artist and an accessible one. His passion is so obvious, intense and contagious, that his audience shares it."

Hughes, who recently relocated to Los Angeles, California, from Toronto, Canada, has carved out an impressive career in the Jazz arena. His five CD's have yielded numerous Top Ten hits on NAC and Smooth Jazz radio formats. He has received the SOCAN/BMI "Jazz & Instrumental Composer of the Year" award for the past five consecutive years in recognition of the distinction of achieving more air play worldwide than any other Canadian artist in the genre.

Brian's first two albums, Between Dusk and Dreaming and Under One Sky, released by Mesa/Bluemoon in the USA firmly established Hughes as one of the foremost guitarists and composers in the genre. Brian came to the attention of his current label Higher Octave Music/Virgin after winning JAZZIZ Magazine's "Guitars On Fire" competition and his subsequent recordings Straight To You, One 2 One, and the current release Shakin' Not Stirred have all received critical acclaim and major radio air play from coast to coast. Brian has twice won the Jazz Report Award for "Group of the Year".

Brian is also well known for his 14 year career performing and recording with world renowned vocalist Loreena McKennitt (The Mummers' Dance) Hughes has accompanied Loreena on numerous world tours. His skills as a musician (guitars, oud, bouzouki) and his production talents are evident on her past seven multi-platinum recordings including the hit album "The Book of Secrets". Brian has appeared with Loreena on the "Late Show" with David Letterman and at New York's famed Radio City Music Hall as well as recording several of her albums at Peter Gabriels' "Real World Studios". Hughes received a Juno (Canadian Grammy) nomination as "Producer of the Year " for his work on the platinum selling Loreena McKennitt album "The Visit".

Recently adding to his international resume, Brian has accompanied legendary Irish group The Chieftains on several U.S., Canadian and Italian tours and has produced two Gold albums for renowned Greek composer Evanthia Reboutsika and one Gold album for the popular Greek vocalist Yannis Kotsiras. Hughes recently taped a PBS concert special in Bucharest with Romanian Gypsy artist Damian Draghici set to air in March 2002.

Brian's website: http://www.brianhughes.com/

Sound Clips: http://www.brianhughes.com/music/

Doc Dosco is a jazz guitarist, composer and audio consultant living in Los Angeles, CA. His website is located at http://www.docdosco.com, where you can find more information on the 'What's Hot in Jazz Guitar' columns, audio clips of Doc's playing, and many additional features. Doc plays Heritage guitars and endorses the new Pignose Valve Tube Amps, great for jazz (and anything else!)

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