Open to the Public, Performing & Visual Arts, Talks & Lectures, University-wide
22 Feb 2017
Richardson Room - Morton 324

A Short History of Open Tunings

CAL Humanities Forum

Music and storytelling have always defined our history. From wandering minstrels to grandmothers alike, they all sang their history to anyone that would listen. The necessity to express oneself without any formal training developed an empirical nuance in guitar history that expressed itself in the form of “open tunings”. Stevens Distinguished Artist-in-Residence Carlos Alomar will relate how these offerings redefined music in the United States. From R&B to R&R from Country to Neo-Soul, open tunings can be found everywhere. He will illustrate his findings by performing with the early African-American “Slave” Tunings of the Louisiana bayou and the Americana Tunings of the Appalachian Mountains to the Neo-soul Tunings of contemporary music. He will discuss the guitar tunings that redefined America as well as the system necessary to analyze one's own tunings.

Carlos Alomar is a world-class musician/composer and bandleader. His influence to the American Songbook dates back over 40 years. He has performed with the Who's Who of American pop culture: Chuck Berry, Peter Paul and Mary, James Brown, David Bowie, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Alicia Keys and Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars, just to name a few. A recipient of over 30 gold or platinum albums, he has served as vice-chairman of the board of trustees for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences as well as serving as the president of the New York Chapter of the Grammys. Alomar continues his studies as founder/director of the Sound Synthesis Research Center for the Performing Arts at Stevens.

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