Sam Pacetti will perform in the Argenta Acoustic Music Series at The Joint Theater & Coffeehouse in North Little Rock on May 21, 2020. Sam Pacetti is one who brings it
Sam Pacetti will perform in the Argenta Acoustic Music Series at The Joint Theater & Coffeehouse in North Little Rock on May 21, 2020.
Sam Pacetti is one who brings it all together. A fingerstyle guitar wizard. A deft songwriter, capable of haunting depth and wry humor in the space of one song. A impassioned and ecstatic vocalist, as well as a mesmerizing live performer, seamlessly melding head-spinning guitar pyrotechnics and raw emotion into one breathtaking package. Pacetti represents a culmination of the best of the American and British traditions. His 1997 Waterbug debut, Solitary Travel, garnered critical raves. “This guy is very good, indeed,” deadpanned the highly respected (and highly critical) UK magazine Folk Roots. And Dirty Linen, the influential US roots publication, opined, “Although the woods are full of young guitar virtuosos, few have developed the style, technique and artistic wisdom of Sam Pacetti.
Solitary travel heralds the arrival of one of the most talented instrumentalists and composers to appear in acoustic music in a month of Sunday’s.” Sam Pacetti grew up in North Florida, hardly known as a hotbed of either the folk tradition or musical innovation. At age 13 he found the music of both Chet Atkins and Merle Travis, profound influences on his early musical development. Then fate intervened shortly afterward in the person of Gamble Rogers, the legendary picker and raconteur from St Augustine who took the young Pacetti under his wing. It was a time of astonishing musical and emotional growth. Pacetti and Rogers met and played weekly for a year, until tragically Rogers died while trying to save a drowning tourist caught in an undertow at Flagler Beach Florida.
Though brief in their time together, Rogers was able to instill in Pacetti the importance of the folk process, the passing of music and oral tradition from teacher to student. Pacetti still counts Rogers as his most influential mentor. Tradition and innovation neatly balance in Sam Pacetti’s music, the whole infused by a relentless intelligence intent on musical and philosophical synthesis. Martin Simpson, Richard Thompson, Joni Mitchell and Merle Travis are touchstones to Pacetti, and while there are strong elements of the American primitive school of guitar wizardry throughout his work, there is a powerful raw emotionality evident as well – an earthy sensuality more reminiscent of a Greg Brown or a red-dirt blues master than of a musical academian. Word has started to spread about Sam Pacetti. And as with anything truly innovative, it starts at the grassroots. You won’t see Pacetti written up in People or Us. You won’t hear his music on Top-40 radio.
No, word is spreading about Sam Pacetti the way true innovation always does – through the grassroots. Through non-commercial radio and “specialty show” play. From tapes and CDs passed from friend to friend. At folk festivals and listening rooms. And, in the tradition stemming from the days of rent-raising parties in the Mississippi delta – and now carried on by music aficionados unable to find music that interest them within the mainstream. For More Information Email Pacetti2012@yahoo.com www.sampacetti.com. A Major Talent in the World Solitary Travel marks the debut of a major talent in the world. If Kottke, Fahey and Procter are household names where you live, consider getting familiar with Sam Pacetti’s work. This young guitarist is an enormous talent. Whether playing a reel, covering Martin Simpson or dishing out a ravishing original, Pacetti is a simply astonishing guitarist.” Eric Fidler- AP A Vivid and Endearing Presence “It is the combination of subtleties that make Sam Pacetti one of the most intriguing and talked about acoustic guitarists today… he is truly a vivid and endearing presence.” Mark Falkner, Florida Times Union Guitaring the Way it Should be Done “In the instrumental tradition of Chet Atkins, Joe Maphis and John Fahey, Pacetti is guitaring the way it should be done.
As a balladeer, he touches Fred Neil or Tim Hardin. It’s rare when a performer combines the head and heart with such consummate chops.” Arvid Smith A Stone Knockout “This is a serious talent on the first blips of a skyrocketing arc. His debut recording, Solitary Travel, is a stone knockout.” Stageside (Iowa City Newspaper) Destined for Greatness “To say Sam Pacetti is destined for greatness would be an understatement. Solitary Travel heralds the arrival of a major artist in the new generation of acoustic musicians.” Very Good, Indeed “This guy is very good, indeed… Here we have real tunes, with real phrasing and spaces between the notes that make sense. Nothing is gratuitously flash, but if you know your way around a fretboard, you know that this is deceptive. The little passing twiddles that wend their way through the tunes illuminate, rather than irritate, and this never descends into “textural” playing. Every tune and song has a firm backbone of a melody.”
Alan Murray, Folk Roots The Absolute Soul of the Acoustic Guitar “If ever the absolute soul of the acoustic guitar could be conjured effortlessly by anyone’s fingers, it is those of Sam Pacetti… his unique gift brings the noble tradition of American Folk Music out of the archives.” Arvid Smith, MUSIC Blazing His Own Formidable Trails “Although the woods are full of young guitar virtuosos, few have developed the style, technique and artistic wisdom of Sam Pacetti. Solitary Travel, Pacetti’s first release, portrays his influences from both sides of the Atlantic, but also finds him blazing his own formidable trails… Solitary Travel heralds the arrival of one of the most talented instrumentalists and composers to appear in acoustic music in a month of Sundays.” Michael Parrish, Dirty Linen Fingerstyle Wizardry “(At Falcon Ridge) among my particular favorites was singer, songwriter and fingerstyle-guitarist extraordinaire Sam Pacetti. I had the opportunity a few months ago to catch Pacetti, and he blew me away. If you closed your eyes on ‘Dueling Banjos,’ you’d never know that this was one young man on one guitar.
And that’s the simple stuff. Pacetti’s debut album (Solitary Travel, Waterbug Records) is filled with nothing less than fingerstyle wizardry – accomplished for the most part live to tape and in one take. Trust me, this is no easy feat.” Terry Lagerstedt, Fairfield, CT Weekly Deft Artistry “Enter Sam Pacetti, whose musical stylings and deft fingerpicking have taken the folk music world by storm… his talents and dexterity around the guitar’s fretboard have been heralded by critics and fellow musicians alike.” Martin Bartels, St. Paul Pioneer
(Thursday) 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
The Joint Theater & Coffeehouse
301 Main Street, North Little Rock, AR 72114