Six strings and two hands equals talent

Preston Reed, Alnwick Playhouse, Wednesday, March 9, 7.30pm. Tickets: £12. Box office, 01665 510785.

PRESTON Reed is often regarded as one of the world’s most gifted acoustic guitarists who has created a legacy of classic albums, stunning performances and blistering technique – in fact, an entirely new way of playing the guitar.

Drawing on blues, rock, funk and jazz influences among others, Reed’s vast range of explosively original music will forever change expectations of a guitarist.

Reed has single-handedly reinvented acoustic guitar playing and first-time listeners find it impossible to believe that they’re hearing just the one musician, in real time.

While never letting his extraordinary technique overshadow the beauty of his music, the multi-award winning Reed engages the entire instrument, creating a rock/jazz rhythm section, melody line and chordal accompaniment simultaneously; hauling out an orchestra you never knew was hidden inside.

At full tilt, his fingers, thumbs, fists and hands at once suggest a drummer, keyboardist, bassist and several guitarists at work.

Reed is a performer that can change the mood in a room from one song to the next. He riffs with the conviction and guts of a rock band, yet plays with the subtlety of that most delicate of jazz pianists, Bill Evans.

There are no fancy gadgets or gimmicky FX – just six strings (or occasionally 12), two hands and a daring and innovative musical imagination that crosses all boundaries.

The show is presented in the NTC studio, at the Playhouse.