Peghead Nation’s Roots of Jazz Guitar and Swing Guitar Soloing instructor Matt Munisteri is one of the relatively small number of authoritative acoustic jazz guitarists playing swing and early jazz, and he is a first-call guitarist when a “period” sound is sought for CDs, film scores, and commercials.
In conjunction with the folks at Centrum in Port Townsend, Washington, Matt has put together a lineup of great instructors and professional instrumentalists to teach 1920s and ’30s jazz at the Red Hot Strings workshop, May 25–29, 2022. From Hot Jazz to Western Swing, Rags to Beguines, we’ll be offering Red Hot in-person classroom instruction in guitar, banjo, mandolin, fiddle, steel guitar, tenor guitar, and bass at Fort Worden State Park in Port Townsend, Washington. Vaccination will be required for all faculty and participants attending in person. Many classes will be available for audit online for those who are not able to attend in-person for whatever reason.
Red Hot Strings’ instructors will include Matt, his Peghead Nation compatriot Aaron Weinstein on mandolin and violin, guitarists Jonathan Stout and Joel Paterson, steel guitarist Mikiya Matsuda, mandolinists Dennis Lichtman and Eva Scow, bassist Matt Weiner, and tenor banjoist Tyler Jackson.
Here’s how Matt explains the nuances of the workshop:
A few years ago, I approached great folk at Centrum in Port Townsend, Washington, about creating a workshop focusing on the complex gumbo of New World string traditions which were all bubbling along throughout the dawn of jazz, and Red Hot Strings is the result. RHS is a celebration of the “jazz age” string players, a long line of musicians birthed in ragtime and blues, and unleashed in the popular music of the 1920s and ’30s. This means 1920s hot jazz and 1930s swing, and naturally the string-reliant sub-genres of Western swing, Hawaiian swing, and even the jazzier jugbands of the American South. We also regard other stringed instrument innovators throughout the Americas – the Caribbean, Latin America, New Orleans etc. – who were likewise enmeshed in their own dialogues with the era’s emergent jazz language, as being connected to this acoustic stringed instrument renaissance. From ragtime to blues, classical to Creole, many musical traditions had a hand in the development of the harmonically and rhythmically compelling improvising vocabulary of jazz, and stringed instrument players were in the mix from its inception!
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