Friday, February 21, 2014

Introducing Gordon Kaswell

Besides being an active Eugene-area music teacher, Gordon Kaswell is a multi-instrumentalist (electric and acoustic guitars, piano, keyboards, bass guitar, hand percussion) in a range of styles (blues, folk, rock, swing). He’s also had success as a songwriter and composer.

Gordon Kaswell has been playing guitar for more than 40 years. He began his musical education as a private student of the piano, and went on to apply the music theory and concepts he learned to the guitar. He performed in clubs in Boston, MA, and Rochester, NY, before moving to Eugene. He performs locally on both guitar and piano, and plays the electric bass guitar, keyboard synth, and hand percussion as well.

At the 2001 Worldfest Film Festival in Houston, Gordon earned a Platinum Award for composing, performing, and recording the world beat musical score for the documentary film, "The Passionate Harvest" (on the subject of international coffee culture and agriculture). "Java Roads" is his soundtrack CD from that film.
 "The Performer," a song he co-authored, has been featured in made-for-TV films on ABC ("A Murderous Affair") and Cinemax ("Desire"), and performed on Saturday Night Live.  The song’s also been covered by several noted jazz singers.  It's featured on "Love is Blue," the 2004 CD release from Blue Note Records jazz singer, Jackie Allen. A member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) since 1988, Gordon also has created custom music for numerous commercial clients, including Symantec, Bellissimo Media, and States Industries.

Since 2007, Gordon has been teaching guitar at The John G. Shedd Institute, where he offers instruction in folk, blues, rock, and swing jazz acoustic and electrical guitar, as well as music theory.

"I give my students the skills and techniques they need to play and enjoy the guitar, while gradually introducing musical concepts that will enable them to understand what they are doing and express themselves creatively in whatever styles and genres they prefer. I believe my teaching style closely matches my performance style which can be summed up as ‘relaxed and personal.' I am here for my students – to help them reach their individual musical goals in a relaxed and supportive environment."
In this video, Kaswell shares what it is like to mature as a musical artist. Also, check out Gordon Kaswell’s Reverbnation page to learn more about his traditional American and British fingerstyle acoustic, rock, classic and contemporary blues, swing jazz, and world beat music.
Vanessa Salvia of the Eugene Weekly offers: “He has built an impressive performing career, but Kaswell is also known among his peers as a talented composer.” 

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