When Bill Dutcher picks up an acoustic guitar, the music that fills the room cannot be branded with a simple sentence. When you see him play live, you’re experiencing an event that shatters the preconceived notion of what a solo acoustic artist is capable of. You’re witnessing the fusion of six strings, ten fingers, unorthodox instruments, and various electronics blend a unique cocktail of rock, blues, and classical as well as Middle Eastern and Celtic flavors into an acoustic symphony. When he walks on stage, all rules are thrown out the window and an improvisational circus explodes before your eyes. Every part of the guitar is fair game as he makes it growl, whine, and sing to the pounding percussive pops, slaps, and pings that emanate from the guitar.
Jay Poole, an alumnus of Boston’s Berklee College of Music, has called Metro Phoenix his home for the last fifteen years. A consummate sideman, he has played with some of the area’s most popular bands, including Delcoa, Easton Ashe, and the Walkens. As a versatile, in-demand session player, Poole has worked on recent releases from Jay Allan and Ryan Sims as well as on three of his own solo albums. Poole is currently a staff session musician at the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences based in Tempe, with a satellite campus in Gilbert, Arizona. He is wrapping up a fourth solo album due in late 2018.
Michael Gallaher, originally from Baltimore, Maryland, is a passionate, fiery guitarist with a fine melodic sense. He left Baltimore at the young age of eighteen to pursue his musical destiny and spent the next several years on the road. A Texas stopover turned into a ten-year sojourn, during which time he became a fixture on the Dallas music scene, recording and performing with a literal Who’s Who of modern music. It was during this time that he was voted as “Texas Tornado” by the Dallas Observer as the year’s best jazz player, joining the ranks of such former winners as Stevie Ray Vaughan, Eric Johnson, and Johnny Winter.
Gallaher later relocated to Nashville where his playing took him even further, as the lead guitar player for superstar vocalist Joe Cocker, traveling the world for the No Ordinary World Tour. It was during this time that another superstar, Leon Russell, heard Gallaher’s album Blue Paradise and signed him to his new label. Eventually, Gallaher met up with Adrian Belew, who was so impressed with the guitarist’s skills, that he added him as a member of his power trio. Equally at home with any number of contemporary musical forms, Gallaher has made a name for himself as one of the most versatile and multifaceted players on the scene today. He is a musician who crosses all musical genre borders and receives high praise from the artists with whom he has collaborated.
Over the 14 years of touring the world with the CGT, we’ve shared the stage with many great guitarists. Bill Dutcher is without a doubt one of the finest solo acoustic guitarists I’ve ever had the pleasure of listening to. Energetic, innovative, excellent compositions, great tone, great player!
—Paul Richards, California Guitar Trio