Los Angeles Guitar Quartet
The Los Angeles Guitar Quartet (LAGQ) is a GRAMMY®-winning American ensemble formed in 1980. It consists of John Dearman, William Kanengiser, Scott Tennant and Matthew Greif (who replaced original member Andrew York towards the end of 2006). They are known for using nylon string guitars to imitate a variety of instruments and effects.
They have played in many styles; Baroque, Bluegrass, Flamenco, Rock, and new-age are among their repertoire. The quartet received a Grammy Award in 2005 for Best Classical Crossover CD, Guitar Heroes. Recent projects include their latest CD, Spin, a tour of new arrangements by the quartet as well as other modern composers.
The quartet was formed at the Thornton School of Music at USC in 1980 by Anisa Angarola under the oversight of Pepe Romero of the famed The Romeros guitar quartet. Among pieces in their repertoire are the works of now-former quartet member Andrew York. See: http://andrewyork.net/blog/Blogpage_lagq.php. His Pacific Coast highway, Quiccan and Bantu are among his more popular compositions for the quartet.
John Dearman is the quartet's seven-string guitar master. He had a special guitar made for him with an added bass string and extended fretboard allowing for greater range, both higher and lower. He currently teaches at El Camino College as well as being on faculty at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
William Kanengiser, another of the founding members of the quartet, has arranged numerous works for the quartet including the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 by Franz Liszt and the group's gamelan piece, "Gongan". He is currently on the guitar faculty of the University of Southern California. He is a double graduate of the USC Thornton School of Music.
Matthew Greif replaced Andrew York in 2006, and is a former student of Kanengiser and Tennant.
Scott Tennant is one of the founding members of the LAGQ. He has recorded two albums of the guitar works of Joaquín Rodrigo as well as another recording featuring Celtic music of England, Ireland and Scotland as well as several modern compositions. He is also a guitar instructor at the University of Southern California and an author of a number of classical guitar method books.
Andrew York left in late 2006 and was replaced by Matthew Greif. York played with the quartet for 16 years. He posted an open letter about his departure on the quartet's site. Here is Andrew's account of his history with LAGQ: http://andrewyork.net/blog/Blogpage_lagq.php
- New Renaissance, released March 17, 2015.
- Interchange: Concertos by Rodrigo & Assad, Telarc International, March 23, 2010.
- Brazil, Telarc International, September 19, 2007.
- Spin, Telarc International, March 28, 2006.
- LAGQ Live! (DVD), January 12, 2006.
- Guitar Heroes, Telarc International, June 22, 2004.
- LAGQ: Latin, Telarc International, September 24, 2002.
- Air and Ground, March 14, 2000.
- L.A.G.Q., September 8, 1998.
- For Thy Pleasure: J.S. Bach and Other Baroque Masters, September 26, 1996.
- Labyrinth, May 30, 1995.
- Manuel de Falla: El Amor Brujo, April 13, 1994.
- Evening in Granada, December 1993.
- Dances from Renaissance to Nutcracker, 1992.
- Guitar Recital: Rossini, Holst, Stravinsky, Siegel, Krouse, and Fauré, November 14, 1991.
- Ljiljana Grubisic, Thornton Faculty, Alums Win Grammys, USC Public Relations, March 12, 2007, Accessed March 4, 2009.