Lenny Breau

April 12, 2007

Randy Bachman was fortunate enough to be neighbors with Lenny Breau when they were kids learning guitar in Canada, and he’s never forgotten the debt he owes his old friend. Now Bachman is paying it forward by releasing the 2,000 hours of Breau recordings of which he is the caretaker on his new Guitarchives imprint. This DVD was shot on one camera with a built-in microphone when Breau showed up at USC shortly before he died. He sits down with his brand-new Kirk Sand

7-string and proceeds to drop the jaw of every student present with his solo renditions of tunes such as “Stella by Starlight,” “The Nearness of You,” “On Green Dolphin Street,” and others. Breau’s dexterity is uncanny, his technique is spotless, and his ability to keep multiple parts going simultaneously is downright breathtaking. He busts out his trademark harp harmonics in several tunes, with the mind-boggling addition of bass notes and

harmonies as he does so. (You gotta see it to believe it.) He takes questions from the students and details this technique, and his explanation is cool, engaging, and absolutely worth the price of the DVD. In an era of slick production values and wacky camera angles, the stark, clinical look of this release is very refreshing. Royalties from Guitarchives releases go to Breau’s kids, so this is a definite win/win.

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