On March 5, composer, multi-instrumentalist and twenty time GRAMMY-winner Pat Metheny will release Road To The Sun, his debut for BMG Modern Recordings and the latest chapter in an endlessly innovative career that spans nearly five decades. A collection of two major new works composed by Metheny and performed by five of the world ́s leading guitarists, Road To The Sun unveils new facets of an already expansive personal language while obliterating any genre boundaries that stand in its way.
Metheny tapped Grammy-winner Jason Vieaux, hailed by NPR as “perhaps the most precise and soulful classical guitarist of his generation,” to perform his four-movement solo guitar suite Four Paths Of Light, which opens the album. It’s followed by the landmark centerpiece Road To The Sun, a six-movement cycle for fellow Grammy-award winners Los Angeles Guitar Quartet (LAGQ) – described by Metheny as “one of the best bands in the world.”
The performers of these two works for classical guitar have voiced what has long been hiding in plain sight; in addition to his accomplishments as a bandleader and performer, Pat Metheny is one of the most important composers of our time.
“Originally, I came to composing as a way of expanding my reach as an improviser,” says Metheny. “Improvising and composing are related activities that happen at wildly different temperatures. But at the same time, ideally the kinds of things that I love as a listener and a music lover are what I aspire to represent, regardless of how they come to be.” There are aspects of Metheny’s own unique and innovative guitar style woven throughout these compositions, not the least being the joyous melodic content that has distinguished so much of Metheny’s work.
Over nearly half a century, across an unprecedented range, the common thread in Metheny’s music is that it is unmistakably his. No matter the setting, within a few notes, you know it is Pat Metheny. And with Road To The Sun, the depth of his personal conception is presented in a context that is as clarifying as it is bracing.
First bursting onto the international scene in 1974, Pat Metheny’s unbounded musical range is nearly without peer. Over the years, he has performed with artists as diverse as Steve Reich, Ornette Coleman, Herbie Hancock and David Bowie, while seamlessly projecting his own identity regardless of setting. He is the only artist to be awarded Grammys in 12 different categories including Best Rock Instrumental, Best Contemporary Jazz Recording, Best Jazz Instrumental Solo, and Best Instrumental Composition, among others.