To find a unique voice on so ubiquitous an instrument as the acoustic guitar is quite an achievement: to do so within a centuries old idiom where the instrument has no real history is truly remarkable. In little over ten years, Tony McManus has been recognized throughout the world Celtic Music’s leading guitarist.
His twin obsessions of traditional music and acoustic guitar have worked together to produce a startlingly original approach to this ancient art. In Tony’s hands the complex ornamentation associated with fiddles and pipes are transferred to his guitar in a way that preserves the integrity and emotional impact of the music.
McManus abandoned academia in his twenties to pursue music full time. The session scene in Glasgow and Edinburgh provided the springboard for a career that spans the globe.
Tony’s music has come to define a new role for the guitar in Celtic music. He has been taking into venues where jigs and reels were conspicuously absent- The Chet Atkins Festival in Nashville, Guitar Festivals in Soave and Pescantina, Italy; Frankston, Australia; Issoudun, France; Kirkmichael, Scotland; He recently appeared at the famous Ryman Auditorium in Nashville in the “All Star Guitar Night” featuring Steve Morse, Bryan Sutton, Muriel Anderson, Béla Fleck and Victor Wooten and headlined by the legendary Les Paul.
Whether on a stage, recording in the studio or behind a mixing desk Tony McManus brings a deep respect for traditional music to bear on all he does. Wherever his journey takes him next it is sure to be an exciting ride.