Music Diary Notes: Pat Metheny Unveils Album of Solo Cover Songs

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Music Diary Notes: Pat Metheny Unveils Album of Solo Cover Songs
Image courtesy of Ted Kurkland Associates

Considering most of my recent coverage of Pat Metheny has been about his behemoth technical undertaking with his Orchestrion, this new project seems like quite an about-face.

Whereas the Orchestrion project (I also reviewed the Orchestrion Live performance I saw) was about creating an automated orchestra that would respond live to his commands, his new recording ‘What’s It All About’ is an intimate set of solo acoustic guitar recordings made in his home studio.

This isn’t the first such recording for Metheny – back in 2003 he used his newly created ‘Baritone Guitar’ with special tunings to produce the gorgeous (and Grammy winning) ‘One Quiet Night’. That session felt like you were sitting in the same room, just enjoying a master at work, playing mostly original songs with a couple of covers.

For ‘What’s It All About’ Metheny took a similar approach – he would regularly play the Baritone guitar, the 42-string Pikasso guitar or another acoustic instrument during down-time or sound checks while touring. Apparently his noodling on familiar tunes by the Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel and others didn’t go unnoticed, as the crew would ask about the songs. He says that the idea of recording an acoustic set of all cover songs has been in his head ever since ‘One Quiet Night’, and now he has realized it using the Baritone, Pikasso and nylon string acoustic guitars.

Metheny did an ‘introduction’ video for Orchestrion project, and similarly he has produced one for ‘What’s It All About’ – so let’s enjoy!

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About the Author

Michael Anderson
I have loved technology for as long as I can remember - and have been a computer gamer since the PDP-10! Mobile Technology has played a major role in my life - I have used an electronic companion since the HP95LX more than 20 years ago, and have been a 'Laptop First' person since my Compaq LTE Lite 3/20 and Powerbook 170 back in 1991! As an avid gamer and gadget-junkie I was constantly asked for my opinions on new technology, which led to writing small blurbs ... and eventually becoming a reviewer many years ago. My family is my biggest priority in life, and they alternate between loving and tolerating my gaming and gadget hobbies ... but ultimately benefits from the addition of technology to our lives!