Kevin Neidig

Published on Jun 8, 2016
Kevin Neidig performs live in The Sound Room at WEEU, 830 AM in Reading, PA. Set includes “The House Carpenter” at 0:00, “Boundary” at 6:42, and “Rain Down” at 10:24.

Extended Audio Session Below:

Rarely do you get in one musician the virtuosity of singer, instrumentalist and songwriter. Kevin brings all three with eloquent effortlessness:

Playing

The unexpected complexity, combined with graceful agility, are what grab you by the throat, compelling you to listen into the wee hours. Kevin possesses an otherworldly ear and literal sleight of hand. Watching his nimble fingers execute a fretboard is like bearing witness to a spider weaving geometry into form. He manages to project a kind of tenderness clad in power, by turns exuding mystery, exuberance and wit.

Singing

From first note, you notice honed, flexible vocals, at once at ease with old-as-the-hills bluegrass as the latest pop number on the radio. There’s authenticity underlying all the flow, and a comfort level with an impressive range – high and soulful to deep and baleful. Clear and powerfully emotive, Kevin’s voice commands you to listen time and again as you marvel at how your soul is stirred with each play.

Songwriting

Kevin’s approach never fails to present a different perspective – lyrically and musically. With his use of intricate timing, ingenuity with keys and tempos, and a dizzying contortion of chords, it’s easy to understand why other musicians clamor to play his compositions for the thrill and sheer workout of it. He delivers impeccably crafted, hand-hewn tunes – a perfect turn of word here, transforming melodies there – lush, tuneful journeys not to be missed.

I’ve been described as a singer-songwriter and maestro of guitar, banjo, mandolin (I love anything with strings), influenced by Darrell Scott, Tim O’Brien, Sam Bush, Bela Fleck and Tony Rice – heroes one and all. I can get eclectic, too – doing the occasional metal tune, Foo Fighters, Allman Brothers Band, etc. Times change, though, and I’m not sure this description fits me anymore.

A person of considerable influence in my life recently described the tunes on my new solo CD as “Music of a New Era” and this feels right to me. Maybe it’s because I’m now working with infusing intention into my music, the results of which feel like something altogether my own, or more “me” than anything else I’ve created musically. After studying under Grammy-nominated Sound Master Jonathan Goldman, I feel I’ve discovered a whole new way of working with music and sound, to the point where one of my sidelines involves working with sound in a healing capacity. I call it Sonic Reiki.

As performances and venues go, I was proud to perform, as part of Voxology, at the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics and to open for such renowned acts as Doc Watson, Peter Rowan, Tom Paxton and the Alison Brown Quartet. I’ve enjoyed playing numerous gigs at colleges and universities, including Bucknell, Penn State and Cornell, to name a few, and just about every festival a stick can be shaken at from Arkansas to New York, such as Ohio’s Funk-N-Groove Music Spectacular, Spoutwood Farm’s Fairie Festival and Harrisburg’s Kipona Arts Festival.

As for bragging rights, I have a nice collection of awards from the Deer Creek Fiddler’s Convention in Westminster, MD, having won first place in the Male Vocal and Old-Time Banjo contests and four first place prizes in the Guitar competition. Another pride and joy of mine is the Neidig Guitar Studio, established 17 years ago in Mechanicsburg, PA, where I teach guitar and mandolin to a roster of talented and inspiring students.