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California Guitar Trio

If you’re looking for truth in advertising for your entertainment dollar, it’s hard to beat the California Guitar Trio — three guys, with guitars, from California. Well, okay, maybe they’re not really from California (Paul Richards, Bert Lams and Hideyo Moriya all live outside of Cali), but they do have a propensity for surf covers. In the late ‘80s, the trio trained at Robert Fripp’s famed Guitar Craft courses, later performing in his League of Crafty Guitarists. Their mentor’s sonic signature can be found in CGT’s sound, which is something like a prog-infused James Taylor colliding with a Mozart-channeling Dick Dale in the middle of the Pacific. Don’t let this influence-collage paint California Guitar Trio into a corner, though. Take, for example, their wonderful rendition of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” which has become a live staple. As you might imagine, the multi-voiced harmonies and neoclassical structure of the original lend themselves well to this kind of reinterpretation. The only room for improvement would be Mike Myers and Dana Carvey providing an interpretive dance.


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