Bram Stadhouders has been winning accolades for his musicianship since the mid-'90s, racking up numerous awards at classical-guitar competitions. This in itself might be impressive, but the real kick is that Bram Stadhouders was born in 1987.
The Dutch prodigy has moved beyond classical guitar but hasn't forgotten his roots; the music he's creating now, at age 22, combines classical themes, improvisational freedom and ambient beauty in ways that elude many much older musicians. He now plays with a band (Bram Stadhouders Korps), does session work and plays solo, as he will appear Wed., Dec. 30, at Garfield Artworks (a show presented by frequent CP contributor Manny Theiner).
Jazz-inspired improv plays into Stadhouders' work as well, and in 2008 he was chosen for the "Young VIP's Tour," in which promising young improv artists play major Dutch jazz venues. Stadhouders' improv pieces with his "Korps" center often on guitar, his native voice, but float as well on synths and wind instruments and are at times tethered by erratic percussion and bass.
Accompanying Stadhouders on the tour that visits Pittsburgh this week are two other Dutch notables: established drone artists Wouter Jaspers and Bas Verbeek. Jaspers, under the name Franz Fjödor, creates patient, hypnotic tonal pieces; Verbeek records ambient soundscapes mainly under the moniker The Day the Black Man Died (a name that relates to the dark musical themes, as opposed to the racial overtones Americans might read into it). The two also collaborate in a more jovially themed drone group called 4DaLadiez.
Bram Stadhouders with Wouter Jaspers and Bas Verbeek. 8 p.m. Wed., Dec 30. $7. All ages. 412-361-2262 or www.garfieldartworks.com
- Bram Stadhouders