We at The AV have learned a lot through this project: not only about the variety and quality of musicians endlessly challenging the defeatist notion that basically everything worth saying through the medium of popular music has been said already, but also about the people making this music, the audience listening to and watching it, the business through which it operates, and the culture which influences and is in turn influenced by it.
Among the observations we are now able to make is that, for whatever reasons, the British Isles are presently producing vast amounts of original acoustic music. This is not to say that plenty isn’t being made in North America, but there is no question that it’s not to the same scale as across the pond.
It is not for us to speculate about the reasons for this phenomenon, or even whether it is a single phenomenon, considering the multitude of styles which fall under the broad “acoustic” rubric. Instead, we are plenty satisfied to support it in whatever small ways we can. It is with pleasure, then, that we introduce John Dignam, a fingerstyle guitarist and composer from South Wales.
John is an heir of the likes of Chet Atkins, Jerry Reed, and Tommy Emmanuel, the latter of whom he performed on stage with at the young age of 17. He has since developed enough to record and release an album, “Down to Earth…,” and to earn a scholarship to attend the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA.
What we like most about John’s playing is that he doesn’t feel a need, as do many contemporary fingerstylists, to put on a fireworks display (which, as you’ll see, he is perfectly capable of) and call it a song. Instead, he shows an understanding of the fact that percussive effects, speed, and any other tricks – which have their time and place, to be sure – cannot replace melody.
We have no doubt that we’ll see many good things from John as he continues to develop as a man and a musician. In the meantime, support his creativity by checking out his website and buying his debut album.