Following his sold-out performance in 2014, popular acoustic guitarist/singer/storyteller Leo Kottke returns to Gainesville for a command performance at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015, in the Santa Fe College Fine Arts Hall at 3000 NW 83 Street, Gainesville.
Tickets for the performance are $25 for adults; $15 for seniors, children under 12, and University of Florida students; and $9 for Santa Fe College students. For ticket information, call the Box Office at 352-395-4181. Tickets may be purchased on line at:
Born in 1945 in Athens, Georgia, Kottke began his musical education on the trombone. Writing about his early trombone lessons and missteps, he displays his characteristic wry humor: “Any fool would know that I was a lucky kid. I got to play, so I get to play. I was guided by trombonists, note by note, toward home.” Kottke switched to guitar at age 11 and is now known for his distinctive fingerpicking style and for his syncopated, polyphonic melodies.
With roots in folk music, jazz and blues, Kottke intersperses his playing with comical commentary and stories about life as a musician. His influences range from the country-blues of Mississippi John Hurt to the music of John Phillip Sousa and the percussionist Preston Epps. “I am evidence that you don’t have to sell a lot of records or succeed in the usual way to have a big audience and a job,” Kottke has also been quoted as saying.
Kottke’s career as a guitarist began with street performances and regular appearances at the Scholar Coffeehouse in Minneapolis in the 1960s. He gained an international following in the 1970s through his recordings and his continuing appearances at folk festivals in Europe and Australia. His latest album, “Sixty Six Steps,” is collaboration with Mike Gordon, bassist for the rock band Phish, and was released in 2005 by RCA Victor.
In recognition of his musical achievements, Kottke has been honored with two Grammy nominations; a Doctorate in Music Performance by the Peck School of Music at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee; and a Certificate of Achievement in Not Playing the Trombone from the University of Texas at Brownsville.
The Santa Fe College Master Artist Series is co-presented by the Santa Fe College Foundation and the Fine Arts Department. The series is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture and Visit Gainesville, Alachua County Tourism grant from visitgainesville.com.
For more information about the concert, call Fine Arts Department Chairperson Alora Haynes, 352-395-5296, or Cultural Programs Coordinator Kathryn Lehman, 352-395-5355.