20-time Grammy winner to take stage at Strings
The legendary Pat Metheny will be on the Strings’ stage this Friday night. Metheny has 20 Grammy awards to his name in 10 different categories — including Best Rock Instrumental, Best Contemporary Jazz Recording, Best Jazz Instrumental Solo and Best Instrumental Composition — illustrating his versatility, resilience and timelessness.
Metheny was born in 1954 into a musical family; he started playing the trumpet at age 8 and switched to the guitar at age 12. By age 15, he was working regularly with the best musicians in Kansas City, receiving valuable experience from his mentors. From the release of his first album, Bright Size Life in 1975, through decades of performances, albums and collaborations, Metheny has defined and redefined his own unique sound and style, which has gained such popularity throughout the years that he has won countless polls as “best guitar artist.”
This tour is part of a new playing environment that he recently launched, called Side-Eye, in which he picks different musicians to play and tour with him for a season. Metheny explained, “I wanted to create an ongoing setting to feature a rotating cast of new and upcoming musicians who have particularly caught my interest along the way.”
Growing up in Kansas City, Metheny said, he was the beneficiary of many older musicians giving him a platform to develop his own music.
What: Pat Metheny Side-Eye with James Francies and Joe Dyson
When: 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 8
Where: Strings Music Pavilion, 900 Strings Road
How much: Starting at $90, visit StringsMusicFestival.com
“I have been feeling like I wanted to have a specific platform to focus on some of the many younger musicians I have enjoyed recently who I have felt some kind of a kinship with,” he said.
In this edition of Side-Eye, he will be joined by James Francies on the keyboard and piano and Joe Dyson on the drums.
Francies, while only 24, has already racked up an impressive resume, playing with jazz headliners like Chris Potter, Stefon Harris, Eric Harland and Terrace Martin. Additionally, he has shown his multifaceted talent, sharing the stage with hip-hop and R&B greats Lauryn Hill, José James, Common and NAS.
His debut album, Flight, melds jazz and pop seamlessly together, and he was recently called “a pianist with liquid dynamism in his touch” by The New York Times.
On the drums, Joe Dyson has been cited, “one to watch.” The New Orleans native began playing music at his family’s church at just 2 years old — now he has traveled extensively, performing on nearly every continent from North and South America to Europe, Asia and Africa. He has appeared on over 30 albums and has shared the stage with Grammy winners Nicholas Payton and Esperanza Spalding as well as Ellis Marsalis, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Jon Batiste and more.
Strings marketing director Greg Hamilton said that performances like this elevate and expand the cultural options in a small mountain town.
“Bringing Pat Metheny to Steamboat Springs feels right in line with our mission as a cultural nonprofit,” said Strings Marketing Director Greg Hamilton. “I find it really cool that such a decorated guitarist will stop here on the same world tour as L.A., Chicago, Boston, Paris, London and Rome.”
Hamilton pointed out that even with 20 Grammy Awards to his name, Metheny is still pushing the boundaries to take his music to new places.
“To see what his new trio can achieve in our space, with the acoustics and close connection to the audience, should be a real treat this Friday night,” Hamilton said.
Sophie Dingle is a contributing writer for the Steamboat Pilot & Today. She can be reached through the editor.
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