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This is my personal selection of the best guitar albums for 2014. Four very different musical worlds but with the same intensity in the six string domain. When I write "guitar albums" I certainly do not mean "music for guitar players"! This is four musical pieces that will appeal to any music fans, and that's the most important thing.

Rock - "Uniparental Advisory" What About Your Mom

It's coming back from the Issoudun Guitar Festival in 2013 (yes, I have written 2013) that I discovered the first album from Brice Delage power trio. I was in the car with Ruddy Meicher and Brice made us listen to the latest mix of the album. It was great stuff despite the listening conditions not optimal (his car radio, highway, etc.). So I was looking forward to the official release of this CD. It did not disappoint me: it's awesome! This is rock'n'roll at its best with Brice in great shape supported by a brilliant Xavier Zolli on bass and Franck Amand on drums. waym-1a If you only buy one disc for 2014, buy this one! If you understand French, listen Brice Delage and Xavier Zolli in interview to find out more. Watch the super cool cover they did of Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger from Daft Punk:

Metal - "Enigma Black Opera" by Stéphan Forté

Stéphan Forté continues his journey with a very specific approach that gives an excellent result. Personally it always takes me time to adjust to enter the world of Stéphan because his music is very intense (that's a compliment!). But once this little effort, one is rewarded because we can then appreciate in full his compositions. This is Shred yes, but Shred with a real musical discourse. hd-cov-borderListen to audio interview Stephan talk about his album. Watch this Backstage Pass video with an interview where Stéphan explains guitar in hand how he composed Enigma and how he works every day. Here's an extract:

 Jazz - "One" Jonathan Kreisberg

On the advice of Bruno Pelletier-Bacquaert (Jazz French professional guitarist based in San Francisco) I discovered Jonathan Kreisberg who is one of the hottest jazz player of the moment. His album One is wonderful. It includes such gems like a very moving version of Alleluia. Jonathan and his guitar just happens to transcribe all the emotion of this powerful song. KreisbergOne During one of his visits to Paris with Dr. Lonnie Smith, I had the opportunity to meet with Jonathan to interview a guitar in his hand in the basement of a hotel. A very good memories of 2014 with a very talented musician who does not hesitate to play with the Jazz guitar codes playing with effects, overdrive, etc. Here's an extract of  the video interview I did with him. Get the Backstage Pass to view it in full:

World - "In Balance" Shaï Sebbag

With this 3rd album, Shaï Sebbag gives us very polished compositions that explore musical colors that are captivating, from unbridled jazz to a captivating Orientalism. We even forget very quickly that there is only one guitar on this album except for a beautiful song with Tania. You think the acoustic guitar has remained stuck  in the golden age of Marcel Dadi ? Jump on this album for an update. Shaï offers with a few other virtuosos of the six strings a bright future for fingerpicking. album_en_equilibre Here's a medley of Shaï live: [cta]

The best guitar albums of 2014

Stéphan Forté is one of those French musician who is more famous in the rest of the world than in his home country.

Here's the video chronicle for November 2013 with videos of the interview of Al Di Meola as well as some exclusive footage shot during the soundcheck, a treat you only get to see very rarely.

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Stéphan Forté

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The full video interview is available in this article.
Stéphan Forté was at the Festival Guitare Issoudun in the middle of France for a masterclass with his usual bass player Franck Hermanny, I jumped on the opportunity to do a video interview with him.
Subjects discussed during the interview
+ His recent change of guitars from Lag to Ibanez
+ The specs of the Premium Ibanez he uses at the moment
+ The details on the future custom guitar with Ibanez
+ His practice philosophy
+ How he works on the instrument
+ His projects for

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Stephan Forte Interview – A top gun shredder at Issoudun

Stéphan Forté was at the Festival Guitare Issoudun to do a masterclass with his bass player Franck Hermanny and I jumped on the occasion to do a video interview with him.