Fretless Wonders

The NYC Fretless Guitar Festival—which took place between September 9 and 12 at the Knitting Factory and the I0 Restaurant and Lounge in New York—showcased guitarists from around the globe.
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Organized by unfretted veteran Michael “Atonal” Vick, the shows presented renowned players such as New York City’s Elliott Sharp and Seattle’s Tom Baker, along with a gaggle of lesser-known unfettered fretters. The event also served as the CD release party for the double-CD compilation Village of the Unfretted [Unfretted], which features artists from 16 countries. Both a CD and a DVD documenting the event are planned.

Credit: Jesper deJong

Eddie DeGenaro delivered awesome chops with style on his Vigier fretless guitar.

Credit: Michael Vick

Elliott “E#” Sharp and his homemade fretless left many listeners shaking their heads in disbelief.

Credit: Jesper deJong

The Eric Rhodes Band belted out the blues with a special Alabama flair.

Credit: Michael Vick

Franck Vigroux and Michel Blanc introduced New York played heavy French music for New York.

Credit: Michael Vick

Swedish subversive Gunnar Backman showed why he’s at the cutting edge of Nordic improvisation.

Credit: Jenny Rowell

Michael “Atonal” Vick and G5 stretched out at the Knitting Factory.

Credit: Jesper deJong

Ratko Zjaca played his Godin Fretless Multiac with a uniquely Croatian spirit.

Credit: Michael Vick

The Tom Baker Quartet simmered through structured improvisations.

Credit: Michael Vick

Even with a broken finger, Yan Vagh dazzled all at the Knitting Factory.

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