One man and his guitars

macnaughtonA vocalist accompanying himself on the guitar (or one of it’s predecessors) is one of the oldest and most prevalent tropes in western music.  From Blondel to Billy Bragg it’s always been with us but it’s quite rare in the world of modern art music where the roles of singer and accompanist are trades as rigidly delineated as anything in a Clydeside shipyard.  Doug MacNaughton breaks the rules by playing a variety of kinds of guitar and singing in a range of styles.  For that question of style is vital too.  The mechanics of doing two jobs simultaneously affect singing style and centuries of performance history offer a bewildering range of stylistic choices.  It’s an issue I examined once before when reviewing a Bud Roach CD for Opera Canada.

Continue reading