Chop talk with Pat Metheny

Guitar, musical wizardry are only the means to express ideas in his head

June 25, 1999 by Mike Ross for the Edmonton Sun


Like all guitar heroes, Pat Metheny denies he's a guitar hero - thus proving that he is. (It's all rather complicated.)

In any case, every Jazz City has to have a designated guitar god, someone who can make your jaw drop with technical wizardry and actually attract rock musicians to a jazz festival. Pat's number happened to come up this year.

For his first Jazz City appearance, Metheny performs Sunday in the Winspear Centre in a rare trio setting. Don't expect to hear Phase Dance and other staples of the more elaborate Pat Metheny Group. Fans should refer instead to Metheny's trio albums, like Question and Answer (1990), Rejoicing (1984) and Bright Size Life (1976).

The 44-year-old jazz superstar says it's been about two decades since he was the darling of the guitar worship cult - perpetuated by guitar magazines that liken the six-stringed instrument to the excalibur sword wielded by brave and manly warriors for whom guitar solos are glorious battles to be won (and occasionally lost).

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PAT'S TRIO GEAR (for guitar enthusiasts only):


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