Mancini is forever…few popular composers have stuck so many great tunes
in our heads. So Solid Air Records asked a dozen great guitarists to
pick a classic Henry Mancini tune and whip up an equally classic solo
guitar arrangement. Some hookups seemed obvious…the incredible Pink
Panther Theme was a perfect match for Laurence Juber’s outrageous
playing, and Moon River’s beauty was perfectly placed with Ed Gerhard.
But that’s just a start; many exciting and beautiful twists
and turns await you on this marvelous theme collection. The complete
list of songs and artists is below, but for starters, there’s Pat
Donohue’s six gun attack on Peter Gunn and Doug Smith’s beautiful
treatment of It’s Easy to Say, the love song from “10!” And speaking of
Doug Smith, just to finish things off right, Doug and his Groovemaster
partner Mark Hanson deliver a bonus duet of A Shot In The Dark. It’s
all just too much fun to miss out on. And it a perfect gift, too!
GRAMMY WINNER !! Pop Instrumental Album of the Year!!
The Tunes, The Artists, The CD...
Pink Panther Theme - Laurence Juber
Moon River - Ed Gerhard (from the movie "Breakfast at Tiffany's")
Days of Wine and Roses - David Cullen
It's Easy to Say - Doug Smith (from the movie "10")
Peter Gunn - Pat Donohue
The Thornbirds Theme - Al Petteway
The Sweetheart Tree - Mark Hanson (from the movie "The Great Race")
What's Happening - Mike Dowling
Charade - Aaron Stang
Dear Heart - Wayne Johnson
Baby Elephant Walk - William Coulter (from the movie "Hatari")
Two for the Road - Amrit Sond
CD BONUS TRACK (not in the book)
A Shot In the Dark - Mark Hanson / Doug Smith duet
HENRY MANCINI: Pink GUITAR SACD2048 CD
Solid Air Records
Here's a capital idea executed brilliantly: 13 inventive acoustic
guitar arrangements of Mancini classics - 12 solo and one bonus duet -
by a dozen top-flight pickers.
Even though this already won the GRAMMY for Best Pop Instrumental Album
of the Year (beating more commercial fare by Mason Williams, smooth
jazzers Boney James and Dave Koz, and an all star tribute to Luther
Vandross) it may have snuck under most people's radar. Don't let it
slip under yours.
Mancini's catalog has been interpreted in a variety of ways, but this,
the first acoustic guitar tribute to the composer,is one of the most
original and refreshing-with a warm, intimate sound, even though each
player's distinctive tone remains intact.
Former Wings guitarist Laurence Juber opens the show with a spirited
reading of "Pink Panther Theme" with CGDGAD tunning allowing the
fingerpicker to capture the essence of Plas Johnson's sax solo while
maintaining a walking bass. Pat Donohue sounds even more like two
guitars, simultaneously playing melody and bass line on a mindboggling
version of "Peter Gunn". Similarly, William Coulter juggles
melody and bass on "Baby Elephant Walk", from "Hatari".
That is two guitars , though, on " A Shot In The Dark" - Mark Hanson
and Doug Smith's appropriately fun not to Inspector Clooseau, with a
reference to "Pink Panther" slipped in at the end.
David Cullen gives "The Days Of Wine and Roses" a bossa nova feel on
gut-string, while steel stringer Ed Gerhard patiently focuses on the
beautiful melody of "Moon River" and Mike Dowling shows that the tv
theme for "What's Happening!!" sits comfortably in a relaxed ragtime
Each artist contributes a description of his selection, and as Aaron
Stang points out, he relied heavily on minor 9th chords to add mystery
and suspense to "Charade", which he pulls off quite successfully. And
All Petteway explains that he changes tunings from CADGAD to DADGAD on
the fly (without losing a beat) in "The Thorn Birds."
A book of all these arrangements with a CD of tips from the players is
also available from AcousticMusicResource.com . So either sit
back enjoy or get to work- but check this out. It's a winner!
Dan Forte/ Vintage Guitar Magazine
Various ArtistsHenry Mancini: Pink Guitar SACD2048 CD
Paying tribute to one of the great composers of the 20th Century - the
legendary Henry Mancini, PINK GUITAR features an assortment of some of
his signature pieces presentd as acoustic guitar interpretations.
Listening to this album
you are struck by how strong (and memorable) Mancini's compositions are...even
with zero background accompaniment, the melodies are just as powerful as they
would be if they were performaed with a full orchestra. The album also shows
how diverse Mancini's repetoire is. "Moon River" (stunningly performed by Ed
Gerhard) captures the very meaning of romance, while "Pink Panther Theme" and
"Baby Elephant Walk" show a more playful , mischievous side to his composing
style. Artists featured include Laurence Juber, Al Petteway, David Cullen,
William Coulter and more.
Music Design Monthly
Henry Mancini: Pink Guitar
On Sunday 13th February at The Staples Centre in Los Angeles, the 47th
Grammy Awards Show proved to be a rewarding evening out for the people behind Henry Mancini: Pink Guitar, an album of instrumental renditions of
Henry Mancini's greatest work - all played on acoustic guitars.
The album was given the award for 'Pop Instrumental Album Of The
Year'. One of the contributors, Amrit Sond, said of the award: "Winning
the Grammy is just amazing. The solo guitar approach can be a long and
unforgiving, hard road for us fingerstyle instrumental musicians. The
music that we play does not necessarily fit into a commercial market place and
the rewards may not be as appreciative as we'd all hope for. The Grammy
makes it all the more worthwhile and recognises our contribution to quality and
our undying dedication to our art. It's also a celebration for the
acoustic guitar to win in a major category".
The album itself features all of Mancini's better known compositions, from
Laurence Juber's run through the much loved 'Pink Panther Theme' to Ed Gerhard's
touching take on 'Moon River', the song that Andy Williams made his own, of
which Gerhard says in the sleeve notes: "When I was asked to contribute an
arrangement of 'Moon River' to this compilation, I groaned a little, but
curiosity got the best of me and after a few attempts in various tunings, wound
up with a skeleton arrangement".
Elsewhere, Al Petteway adds a faithful version of 'The Thorn Birds' while
Mike Dowling's rendition of 'What's Happening!!', the theme from the 70's sitcom
of the same name, is as familiar as it is warming. Sond himself
contributes 'Two For The Road' to the record, of which he says: "the beautifully
written and emotionally moving melody lent itself very nicely to my nocturnal
nature. This version reflects that peaceful time where everything just is
(it was recorded around 4:00am - and in FADGBE tuning)".
James Jensen, owner of Solid Air Records and one of the men responsible for
putting the compilation together (along with his colleague Aaron Stang) said of the compilation on the sleeve:" At this
10th anniversary of the passing of the legendary composer Henry Mancini there
are many products in the stores honouring his memory; everything from repackages
of older recordings to new and exciting versions of his tunes from jazz
ensembles to pop stars. Our collection marks the first time a group of
guitarists has tackled his compositions; it's a tribute to the strength of his
melodies that even played with no other accompaniment they retain all their
power, beauty and playfulness".
On its way to winning the Grammy, the album beat off stiff competition from
a tribute album dedicated to the work of soul singer Luther Vandross, which
featured contributions from artists as respected as George Benson. Also in
the category were albums by Boney James and Dave Koz.
Everyone at Acoustic sends our congratulations to all of the
contributors on the album, and everyone involved in putting it together.
Brett Callwood/Acoustic Magazine UK