Lest I Forget All About the 6-string Guitar…

(Duplicated from my Facebook page)

For those looking for something refreshingly different at Anaheim, California’s NAMM show this weekend, I would highly recommend seeking out Italian guitar virtuoso Filippo Bertipaglia. He’ll be playing throughout the weekend for 4 vendors: L. R. Baggs, Godin, D. V. Mark and Gokko. Readers may recall that I wrote about serendipitously discovering him at NAMM in my blog last year: http://harpguitars.net/blog/2019/01/winter-namm-2019/ (if you’re curious, the first thing he played for us last year that I fell in love with: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kx2VVONj_iw

My opinion of The World’s Greatest Guitarist You’ve Never Heard Of has only intensified, especially after these last two full days of being privately serenaded when my wife and I hosted Filippo at our home.

As Filippo can play every style of plectrum, fingerstyle, hybrid-picking and classical guitar, I had grandiose plans of capturing him playing various guitars in my museum. As he was nursing a sprained finger, I didn’t dare try to force the issue, though the sounds I heard on these instruments were astounding (and he got his first harp guitar lesson)! Someday…

filippo1Left, with my 1983 Peñalver “M. C. Escher inside-out” Spanish guitar.
Right, getting his 24 frets with the 1920s Maccaferri harp.

I did manage to capture a new never-before-recorded piece (video to come).

filippo2With his custom 24-fret steel-string

Here’s an abbreviated description of his music (mind you, I’ve got zero stake in his future, I’m just a fan): What springs to MY mind is:

What the French Impressionists from Debussy to Milhaud are to that genre, Filippo is to Italy. Aurally, his sophisticated flights of fantasy – originals and the occasional cover arrangement – consist of breathtaking complexity and unnerving beauty. And always melody (if not of the “easy listening” background music variety). Visually, it is simply mesmerizing – as if each finger has a mind of its own. This weekend I learned why. He doesn’t write on his instrument (a 24-fret cutaway Seagull), he writes in his head (and heart), meticulously notates it, then finds a way to PLAY it – inventing new techniques, growing extra fingers, whatever it takes! The result is always uncompromising and fearless, near-impossible yet flawless. What a thrill to fully immerse myself in his process and oeuvre this weekend. (More good news: his first CD has completed recording.) A musician’s musician, I hope the general public will stop and take him in.

Meanwhile, we treated him to a drive to the beach…

filippo3Zoolandering it up at Malibu Beach. One of us was once employed as a magazine model. You have to guess which.

filippo5

Tidepool Jeopardy. What is “What the hell is that?”

filippo6

filippo7Filippo’s first sunset on the Pacific.

filippo8Saying goodbye to Jaci and Maezi.

  1. Steve Silva Says:

    Oh my!!! I missed the links in the blog from last year’s NAMM. Thanks for this post. I have no words to describe how amazing Filippo is. It is like watching a magic act performed only with his left hand. The writing is exquisite and the technical prowess puts him in a class by himself. Definitely my new guitar hero.

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