Michael Hedges

A friend of mine, let’s call him Kev (because that’s his name), has a unique talent for finding amazing music, which he then shares with his friends under beer consuming circumstances. There is nothing like the experience of being blind drunk, sitting on Kev’s couch, when he unveils his latest find.

The music doesn’t have to be new—as in released this year or even this decade. But a good Kev find is invariably something you simply wouldn’t stumble upon—but, once you’ve heard it, you’ll be listening to religiously for the rest of your life.

Not content with introducing me to Weather Report, Allan Holdsworth, Joni Mitchell, Santana and Yes, a couple of years ago now, Kev played me some Michael Hedges—a phenomenal guitarist who, by the time we got into his music, had already sadly lost his life, in a car crash. But his music, as they say, lives on.

When Kev first found the below clip, on YouTube, it was slightly out of sync with the audio, which to anyone watching unaware of the truly groundbreaking tap technique he brought to the instrument, made it appear as if he was lip syncing.

This newly transferred version of the performance, shows what an amazing talent he really was.

Truly transparent technique. What he’s playing is as impossible as it gets on the guitar, but he makes it look like the kind of thing you might do accidentally the first time you ever pick up a guitar and innocently strike a magic chord, rarely played.

10 comments on “Michael Hedges

  1. Michael Hedges is one of the leading examples in my theory of making every effort possible to see artists you love, because you never know when they may be taken from the world. I started with Live on The Double Planet and since then have acquired all of his albums. The first track I ever heard from him was his brilliant cover of All Along The Watchtower.

    I was surprised, a few weeks ago, to hear ‘Ritual Dance’ in the film August Rush, in the story it was played by the kid, but in reality was performed by Kaki King.

    Even though Hedges played nearby several times over the years, I never went to see him. I cried the day I got the news that he had died.

  2. The thing that always frustrates me about live music events, is knowing something will be MEGA when you hear about it, and then not getting around to sorting out tickets until it’s too late. In the last few years I’ve missed Jeff Beck playing with Mahavishnu John McLaughlin and Terry Bozzio, Dweezil plays Zappa, Stevie Wonder and Prince—ALL gigs I could have easily gone too and just didn’t—for some self-defeating reason.

    I did see Van Halen with Dave Lee Roth and go all the way to Sacramento, California for the privilege, mind you. Which isn’t music on a Michael Hedges level—but I still wept openly when they first stepped out on stage together.

    Kaki King is.. ..weird.

    Have you heard Imogen Heap?

    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=25VGdNU3nrU

  3. Wow this is an amazing video..have’nt heard of Michael Hedges till now.. must check out more of his stuff. I love having a friend who intro’s you to all sorts new music…i have a similar friend who will start bringing out the most obscure tracks and its always a treat!

  4. M: Kev’s list of hits is ridiculous. He introduced another friend if ours to every single one of his all-time favourite artists all in one night. There was much rejoicing.

  5. This is really a greatwebsite. I have a bunch myself. I really like your design. I know this is off topic but,did you make this design yourself,or purchase from somewhere? London,UK

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