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Hans Tammen

Hans Tammen calls his style of performance ENDANGERED GUITAR because of the extreme alterations he enacts upon his instrument's sound and construction. Originally inspired by Sonny Sharrock’s and Pete Cosey's fiery and energetic playing, his rapid-fire juxtapositions of radically contrastive and fascinating sounds capture the energy and abstract musicality that Coltrane brought to the saxophone. His music has been described as an alien world of bizarre textures and a journey through the land of unending sonic operations, his playing, as a critic observed, with his "...fingers stuck in a high voltage outlet". Signal To Noise called his works "...a killer tour de force of post-everything guitar damage", All Music Guide recommended him: "...clearly one of the best experimental guitarists to come forward during the 1990s."

The music for his large ensemble THIRD EYE ORCHESTRA (string and wind quartets, extended rhythm section, voice and electronics) is inspired by west african roots of Jazz, Miles Davis' Bitches Brew, Steve Coleman, and Stravinsky's layering or Steve Reich's phase techniques. All About Jazz called the music "nothing short of breathtaking", and "a masterpiece of musical evocation".

Hans Tammen is currently playing a Buchla Music Easel, a West Coast analog synthesizer created for improvisers who look for surprising results.


Hans Tammen received grants and composer commissions from NewMusicUSA, MAPFund, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, American Music Center, Lucas Artists Residencies Montalvo, French-American Jazz Exchange, New York State Council On The Arts (NYSCA), New York Foundation For The Arts (NYFA), American Composers Forum w/ Jerome Foundation, New York State Music Fund, Goethe Institute w/ Foreign Affairs Office, among others.


Album Review
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"...a monster of a player ...a killer tour de force of post everything guitar damage." (Larry Nai, Signal To Noise)

"...clearly one of the best experimental guitarists to come forward during the 1990s." (François Couture, All Music Guide)

"Hans Tammen has his own way of playing the guitar..." (New York Times)

"...one of the most ferociously talented and inventive guitarists to emerge in the last ten years. His technique is noisy and percussive, his energy relentless and unstoppable." (Richard Cochrane, Musings)

"White-hot solo guitar work... Recent years have seen a slew of fine free guitarists emerge..., but nothing they've done so far packs this kind of punch... " (Dan Warburton, Signal to Noise)

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Album Discography



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