Biography Guitarist - Composer - Educator
Some of my Life in Music
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New York Late '80s

Dennis Sandole

Lisa Michel and Billy
Back in New York, culture shock. I was seeing Dennis Sandole in Philadelphia going once a week, then later twice a month. His lessons were according to a determined structure, there was no criticism and minimal suggestions on his part. You just worked with the materials he composed for you and then performed it the best you could the following week. "Showtime!" and "I have my finger right on the pulse of your creativity." The lessons ended up being a lot of arranging for the guitar and composing, the results of which can amply be found on this website. I was not trained technically on the guitar and given no real pointers from him. Early on I developed tendonitis as a result of the impossible chords and intervallic structures attempted.

For a time more work was focused on ear training, open string compositions and a good amount of reading and research. I got interested in vegetarianism and health while trying to resolve my problem.
There was a point at which I could not use my left hand for anything, but in a few months this cleared up. In this time period I did many kinds of gigs with Lisa Michel, a very fine vocalist now located in Los Angeles. I worked a lot for the Brooklyn Arts Council and for Hospital Audiences visiting many homeless shelters and hospitals all through the New York Area. It was satisfying work in those years. Before this organization lost much of it's funding, we were able to perform in quartet and trio quite a number of times every month. I wrote during this time a number of original compositions, guitar arrangements and compositional cells.
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©2005 Billy Newman | Brooklyn, USA |