Alex de Grassi Performance and Q&A

On November 26th, 2018 Alex de Grassi performed and hosted a Q&A for the DRBU community. Alex de Grassi is a Grammy nominated guitarist known for his talent in combining various musical elements and elevating the art of contemporary fingerstyle guitar to critical acclaim. DRBU Professor Rev. Heng Sure introduced Alex de Grassi to the audience as his guitar teacher and shared how deeply inspired he was by de Grassi’s albums. Alex de Grassi imparted how he is constantly brainstorming his next composition, sharing several of his compositions, such as Cumulus Rising. After playing, he would dissect the countless techniques included in a single piece: glissando or sliding, hitting harmonics, strumming, and finger picking, and told the audience the inspiration and story behind each piece. During the Q&A, de Grassi shared that he enjoys being alone with his guitar, as he finds that his mind is clear and extremely focused.  

When asked which of his countless compositions were his favorite, de Grassi replied: “I always say that my favorite song is the one I haven’t written yet.” Another person requested a lullaby, which de Grassi contextualized by describing how one of his albums was his interpretation of lullabies all over the world. He said, “I’m going to play something that is not quite a lullaby, but seems like one.” He played a somber Irish tune of mourning. After the event, audience members admitted to shedding tears upon hearing the intense emotions of the piece.