A Lifetime of Songs...
The acoustic guitar has played an important role in my life - as an inspiration, a companion, and sometimes a salvation. And has played an integral part in relationships throughout my life, leading to some of my most cherished memories.
This web site in a chance to share some of the music I've created or been a part of over the past decades. I'll be offering solo guitar instrumentals from my recent Autumn Winds CD, bossa nova and jazz standard collaborations with my wife Eva Bagno, original songs from my 1983 album Toneweave, songs that I've written and recorded over the years, and collaborations with other musicians.
Please listen and enjoy, and share the link with others...
* Woodpecker Ravine is from the Autumn Winds CD. Handmade guitar by luthier Mike Kelly, using a Liberty Flip partial capo and reverb effects from a Tonewood Amp.
* Fever was recorded in our living room, into the air and captured by a mini recorder - with reverb later added.
* Suki Ananda is an instrumental from my 1983 Toneweave album. With Mark Schneider on fretless bass and Robert Moore on oboe.
* I love Beatles tunes. Michelle is a beautiful melody. From the new Autumn Winds CD.
* Dindi by Antonio Carlos Jobim, performed by Gary & Eva. A wonderful bossa nova, recorded in our living room.
* Scarborough Fair, recorded live at at 1978 concert, by Jeff Mincey and me. I'm playing the lower guitar part, and mainly singing the high harmony - though we switch on verse two.
* Dancing Reeds, from Autumn Winds, is a more contemplative piece, and also uses a partial capo to create an open Esus chord.
* Hohum, from my Toneweave album, is a song about taking it easy. It features George Hancock on flute, and Jim Reinking on drums, along with Mark and Robert.
* Here Comes the Sun by George Harrison. This instrumental version is from 2007, more leisurely and with a chorus-type effect from a Digitech pedal. Requested by my son Daniel.
* A bossa nova called Watch What Happens by Michel Legrand, played by the Gary & Eva Quartet - with Roy Kaufmann, drums & Scott Rogers, bass.
* Evaluating the 8-track Spire Studio recorder for a magazine article, I recorded a multi-track version of my 2018 song Yellow Leaves. An acoustic guitar part backs double-tracked vocals plus a harmony, with "bass guitar" on an electric guitar, and a lead part using an E-Bow on that same guitar.
* Queen Anne's Lace is a composition from 1977 played on a dulcimer I built (an example is on the Gallery page). My approach to this essentially 3-stringed instrument is unconventional, and I use chord forms, moving lines, and fingerpicking. This was taken off a 40 year old cassette tape.
* Walk These Blues, from Autumn Winds, is a bluesy fingerpicking tune that I created about 15 years ago.
* Frim Fram Sauce is a tongue-in-cheek song written in 1945. Fun to play with Eva.
* Someplace Once Ours from Toneweave is about seeing old familiar friends and places after a long time has passed, and the mix of excitement and unease. With Don Latarski on electric guitar.
* Here's a solo guitar version of the traditional tune John Barleycorn from Autumn Winds.
* James Taylor's The Secret of Life, from a 1978 live show with Jeff & Gary. I'm adding an upper guitar part, and harmony vocals on the second half.
* Whatever Lola Wants is from the musical Damn Yankees from 1955. A song of seduction, by the Gary & Eva Quartet.
* A composition from 1977, Ginger was recorded by playing the same tune twice on steel-string and nylon-string guitars, captured by a Teac multi-track reel-to-reel that cost me a month and a half's earnings. Taken from a very old cassette tape.
* Autumn Winds, from the CD of the same name. Started creating this piece while experimenting with an Em6 to F#dim chord sequence, and from there...
* Late Blooming Flower from Toneweave. A celebration of growing through the awkward times in life and coming into your own.
* The Gary & Eva Quartet version of Let's Face the Music and Dance.
* Carefree River was actually named by someone in the audience at a gig in 1979, then recorded on Toneweave with oboe and bass. Features a straight-foward D7 to G section contrasted with another that goes somewhere quite different...
* Paul Simon's The Boxer, performed by Jeff & Gary in a 1978 live show. With two guitars and me on the upper vocal harmonies.
* Mother Ocean is from Charlie Murphy's Catch the Fire album, recorded in Nashville in 1980. I played dulcimer on this track - harmonics, accompaniment, and the solos. Thanks to Jami Sieber, the cellist who played with Charlie, for this digital track.
* An instrumental version of Sting's Fragile, from the Autumn Winds CD. A simple, beautiful tune.
* Fly Away from the Toneweave album, with Dan Siegel on piano. The chorus came to me in a dream, and I awoke and wrote the song.
* Poetry with Dulcimer, from Robert Bly's 2006 reading at Shedd Auditorium, Eugene, OR. I improvised by listening to his words and voice in front of 600+ people. First met Bly, who liked my dulcimer playing, in 1973. He had me build him one a year later, and we did a couple readings together.
* One Note Samba, a bossa nova by Antonio Carlos Jobim. A fun tune at gigs, recorded at home.
* The traditional Greensleeves, with me on the upper guitar part and harmony, along with Jeff Mincey.
* I've played Summertime for decades, mainly with guitar accompanying vocals. Just took off playing the tune instrumentally late in the evening, and liked the sound and "feel" of what came out...
* Manha de Carnaval, composed by Luiz Bonfa and performed by the Gary & Eva Quartet.
* City of New Orleans by Steve Goodman, a perennial favorite of mine. Guitar capo on the 5th fret and recorded this morning (4/28/20).
* Thalia, from Autumn Winds, is named for the fancy guitar capo I used when creating the tune. I used two capos to create an open Bsus chord; it has a moving melody with a drone bass. Recorded it over two years ago, about 30 minutes after composing.
* Lady Rain from Toneweave, my first song written in Oregon, up on Mt. Pisgah in the Summer of 1979. I'm playing both the acoustic and electric guitar parts.
* Eva sings Autumn Leaves in both the original French and the familiar English lyrics. Recorded in the living room a few years ago.
* Greet the Day is a short, one-verse song I wrote, which Jeff and I played to close the 1978 concert. I did the lead guitar part and sang the harmony.
* Charlie Murphy's Healing Song, recorded in 1980. I played a moving dulcimer part, fingerpicked and with harmonics, which you can hear behind Charlie's rhythmic guitar part and vocals.
* A solo acoustic instrumental version of Your Mama Don't Dance by Loggins & Messina.
* Our version of If I Only Had A Brain, from the Wizard of Oz movie. Recorded yesterday (5/4/20) in our music room, direct to a digital recorder.
* For Graham is written for my first son, born just before dawn during the Persied meteor shower. Wrote the first phrase that morning, and finished it a couple weeks later. From 1983's Toneweave. With Don Latarski on electric guitar.
* Timeless is a piece by guitarist John Abercrombie. My version emphasizes the repeating note pattern that begins 4 minutes into the original version, and adds my own embellishments on this theme. From the Autumn Winds CD.
* Toulouse Street by the Doobie Brothers, performed by Jeff & Gary in 1978. I'm playing the upper guitar part and harmony vocal, and doing the main vocal in the middle section.
* You Came A Long Way From St. Louis is a bluesy tune first recorded in 1948. This version is Eva on vocal and me on guitar, recorded in the living room.
* Just Past Dawn, on the Autumn Winds CD, began one morning a few years ago when I was working on the music for one of Izzy Tooinsky's storytelling CDs.
* Lennon & McCartney's Norwegian Wood is a favorite to play at gigs. I recorded the song this morning (5/11/20). Played in dropped-D tuning.
* Pebble in the Stream, from the Toneweave album, explores a philosophy of life from my earlier years. It features both flute and oboe, and I'm playing two acoustic guitar parts plus vocals.
* I wrote A Summer's Tune in 2017 -- a tale of seasons, love, and the passing of years. The lyrics refer to the gardenias and hummingbirds on our deck. Recorded in May 4, 2020 in the music room.
* Drifting Downstream is from the Autumn Winds CD. It's a dreamy piece in E-minor, with the bass ascending while the melody line is descending.
* Mr. Bojangles was one of my Dad's favorites, and I played it throughout his life, since my mid-teens. It was one of the last songs I sang to him...
* I created Sunlight Through The Pines a couple mornings ago, sitting on the deck overlooking the forest. Played on a OO-sized acoustic by Mike Kelly, using Harvey Reid's Liberty Flip partial capo to make an open Esus chord. A fun, rhythmic theme.
* Peel Me A Grape is a "slinky" song written in 1962 by Dave Frishberg. Eva plays around with the vocals in our version, recorded at an outdoor show.
* Love Song by Elton John / Bernie Taupin, as performed by Jeff & Gary in a 1978 show. I'm playing the upper guitar part and upper harmony, except for lead vocal on the second verse. We also do unison and harmony humming in the middle...
* From the Toneweave album, Wounded Bird is about still reaching out when you're between loves. The closest to a rock tune I've written, with Gary Rowles on electric guitar (also the producer).
* My version of My Girl by the Temptations. First learned it to play for my son Patrick's school class. A song I often play at gigs.
* Gee Bossa from Autumn Winds is an instrumental in a bossa nova style in the key of G.
* Meditation by Antonio Carlos Jobim, a gentle bossa nova that Eva and I enjoy playing. Recorded to a mini-recorder yesterday, live in our music room.
* Lovemaking Eyes is the first song on the Toneweave album. I wrote it while I was taking a music theory and composition class at Lane Community College in Eugene.
* I wrote Next First Kiss for Eva, soon after meeting her, in early January, 2008. It's the story of our first get-together, with a tongue-in-cheek chorus. Recorded today (5/28/20) on the Spire Studio.
* Georgia On My Mind, as recorded yesterday with a couple mics and the Spire Studio...
* Send In The Clowns - the classic story of missed opportunity. Eva and I were looking to create a less "orchestral" version than in the famous recordings. Recorded May 28, 2020 in the music room.
* The last tune on the Autumn Winds CD is named Funky One. It's an after midnight, bluesy ramble that I liked, and pushed "record"...
* John Prine's Angel from Montgomery, performed in 1980 by Lyndia Scott and Gary Parks. Just discovered this cassette tape from 40 years ago...
* A haunting tune called Cassandra, played by Lyndia and Gary - from the same 1980 tape.
* An earlier version of my song Lady Rain, as a duo with Lyndia, who adds the guitar rhythm track and harmony vocals.
* Salvaged another couple tunes from the old 1980 cassette. Joni Michell's Free Man in Paris, as played by Lyndia Scott and me.
* This is Either or Both by Phoebe Snow, performed by Lyndia and Gary.
* Long Ago and Far Away by James Taylor, as played by Lyndia and I in 1980.
* Found a very old tape last night, containing this tune. Four decades ago, I came across a way out-of- tune guitar sitting around, but it was almost in an interesting yet unusual tuning. I tweaked the strings a bit, played some harmonics and other ideas, and later that day tuned my Martin D35 accordingly and started recording those ideas. Just named this discovery Afternoon Improv '79. Don't have any idea of the exact tuning or how I'd play this now...
* And another original song from a late 1970's cassette tape, called Dreaming Your Life Away. Recorded on a Teac 4-track reel-to-reel, with two guitar parts and 3-part harmony. A good bit of noise from the old tape which I was able to digitally reduce somewhat, yet it's a cool tune that I haven't heard for almost 40 years. This is the only existing version, as far as I know.
* From the same cassette tape, Jeff Mincey and I doing a bit of multi-track vocals on the Poco song Keep On Trying, in 1978.
* I put a digital recorder next to me at an outdoor rehearsal of our quartet early this Summer, while we worked on an arrangement of the Latin tune Obsesión by Pedro Flores. Here's the result...
* In the mid-1970's, a local TV station in Columbus, Indiana paired artists to create shows. I composed pieces for various poems, including the four-part Peter Quince at the Clavier by Wallace Stevens.
This is the music part of that presentation.
* Found another old tape from late 1979 with several songs by Lyndia Scott and I. This first one is Green Bamboo by Brewer & Shipley, with both of us on guitars and vocals.
* Come Down In Time by Elton John and Bernie Taupin is a haunting tune that I remembered singing with Lyndia. Hadn't heard it for decades until playing this tape.
* The Band's The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, with Lyndia on lead vocals and me adding harmony to the chorus.
* The next two tunes are exceptions to the rule, in that Eva Bagno recorded them in the early 2000's before I met her - so I'm not playing on them - but I love how she sings these jazz standards, so they're here. The first is Nice Work If You Can Get It, with pianist Glen Rose accompanying her.
* Eva sings Love Me Or Leave Me, accompanied by Arthur Richards on guitar and Mark Schneider on bass.
* A song called Keepin' The Heat Down (couldn't find the composer), performed by Lyndia & Gary in 1979.
* Lyndia & Gary's version of a country blues sounding song called Please Be With Me by Eric Clapton. I'm playing bottleneck slide guitar on a very old acoustic guitar with high strings, and adding harmony.
* The oldest recording in this list, from 1971, is a version of The Association's No Fair At All. It features Dave Latimer on lead vocal, with harmonies by John Graham Shinnick and me - and all of us on guitar.
* The Sadness of the Sea (or Ode to the Sea) is one of Lyndia Scott's compositions. In this version, it's two guitars and me on harmony vocals. A beautiful tune...
* Here's Pretty Friend by Cowboy Boyer and Talton, as played by Lyndia & Gary in 1979. I'm on lead vocals and lead guitar.
* From the same 1971 reel-to-reel tape is Dave, John Graham, and my versions of He Was A Friend of Mine and Find the Cost of Freedom. With guitars and three-part harmony - in the spirit of those times. You can find a photo of the three of us on the Gallery page.