Artist: Michael Keith + Pedram Khavarzamini
Songs: [second piece, in two parts]
Recorded at Array Space (The Music Gallery's Departures Series), June 18, 2016.
This Music Gallery off-site show brought together three guitar heroes in quite different contexts. Leading off the night, and representing the local side, was Michael Keith with his three-stringed baritone ukulele. This was originally scheduled as a set with his occasional duo partner Saab Narayan, but unforeseen circumstances meant he wasn't available. The silver lining was that tombak master Pedram Khavarzamini was available to fill-in. The complete ease with which he added gloriously-subtle elaborations to Keith's Persian-inspired lines might have left the impression that this was a carefully-rehearsed performance — but it was, in fact, fully improvised by a pair of musicians who had never played together before. After two mid-length instrumental pieces, Keith closed out the set with an improvised "combination blues" song, combining his keen interests in two diverse traditions, and uniting them quite seamlessly.