Sunday, April 30, 2017 at 10:15 pm
The U.K. Band Acoustic Alchemy have spent over a quarter century making music and in that time they have not only received critical acclaim for their albums (including several Grammy nominations), but also have built a reputation for being one of the most exciting live bands in the business. Through it all, the overriding mission of the band has been to push the potential of instrumental music to embrace a broad spectrum of styles without being limited to any specific genre. For the last decade the band lineup has been made up of Greg Carmichael on nylon guitar, Miles Gilderdale on steel string acoustic and electric guitars, Fred White on keyboards and the powerhouse rhythm section of Greg Grainger on drums and his brother, Gary on bass. But the band’s story began with two guitarists, Nick Webb and Simon James, who recorded a self-financed, self-produced album in the mid 1980s entitled Acoustic Alchemy. Shortly after the release, James left the partnership and Webb promoted the record on his own. He turned to a rock guitarist named Greg Carmichael and the two assumed the name of Acoustic Alchemy. The duo initially worked for Virgin Airlines, recording in-flight music for trans-Atlantic flights, then signed to MCA, where they released their debut album “Red Dust & Spanish Lace”. After two more records on MCA, Acoustic Alchemy moved to GRP and released the Grammy-nominated “Reference Point”. Some years later Webb had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He died in 1998, so Gilderdale, who was playing in the electric guitar slot at the time, had to expand his technical skills and repertoire on acoustic guitar to take Webb’s place alongside Carmichael at the front of the band.
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