Ralph Towner

Legendary jazz guitarist to perform at Washington University Oct. 19

Legendary jazz guitarist Ralph Towner, perhaps best known as guitarist, keyboardist and lead composer for the acoustic jazz ensemble Oregon, will present a free solo concert at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19, in Washington University’s Graham Chapel.

Calendar Summary

WHO: Guitarist Ralph Towner

WHAT: Concert

WHEN: 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19

WHERE: Graham Chapel, just north of the Mallinckrodt Student Center, 6445 Forsyth Blvd.

COST: Free and open to the public

INFORMATION: (314) 935-5508

Graham Chapel is located just north of the Mallinckrodt Student Center, 6445 Forsyth Blvd. The performance is sponsored by Washington University’s Department of Music in Arts & Sciences: WUJazz, a Washington University student group; and the Student Union Speakers’ Fund.

For more information, call (314) 935-5508.

Widely respected as a jazz guitarist, a classical guitarist and a jazz pianist, Towner was born in Chehalis, WA, in 1940 and studied classical composition at the University of Oregon and classical guitar with Karl Scheit in Vienna. In 1968 he began playing 12-string guitar with The Paul Winter Consort, a New York City jazz ensemble, and in 1972 began a longstanding relationship with producer Manfred Eicher of ECM Records, which would later release his groundbreaking, minimalist Solo Concert (1980).

To date, Towner has recorded close to 50 albums, both with Oregon and for ECM, and collaborated on dozens more with artists such as Gary Burton, John Abercrombie, Egberto Gismonti, Larry Coryell, Keith Jarrett, Jan Garbarek and Gary Peacock. His most recent releases are Anthem (2001), a solo recording for ECM; and Jade Muse and Live at Yoshi’s (both 2002) with Oregon.

In 2000, Towner earned four Grammy Award nominations for Oregon in Moscow, an orchestral double-CD recorded with the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra. Other honors include two German Grammies, in 1976 and 1988, and the New York Jazz Award for best New York City acoustic guitarist. He has performed in prestigious concert halls around the world and currently resides in Rome with his wife, the Italian theatre actress Mariella Lo Sardo.