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Howard Alden

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Origin  New York City
Name  Howard Alden
Occupation(s)  Musician
Role  Guitarist
Years active  1973–present
Genres  Jazz

Howard Alden
Born  October 17, 1958 (age 57) Newport Beach, California, United States (1958-10-17)
Instruments  Seven-string guitar, tenor banjo
Albums  Hot Club of 52nd Street, Hand-Crafted Swing
Movies  Howard Alden: Live at the Smithsonian Jazz Cafe
Record labels  Concord Records, Arbors Records
Similar People  George Van Eps, Bucky Pizzarelli, Ken Peplowski, Dan Barrett, Warren Vache

Jazz guitar mastery with howard alden

Howard Alden (born October 17, 1958) is an American jazz guitarist born in Newport Beach, California. Alden has recorded many albums for Concord Records, including four with seven-string guitar innovator George Van Eps.


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Howard alden the 21st north wales international jazz guitar weekend

Early life

Howard Alden Home

Howard Vincent Alden was born in Newport Beach, California on October 17, 1958. He grew up in Huntington Beach, playing piano, harmonica, the four-string tenor guitar, and then four-string banjo at age ten. After hearing recordings of Barney Kessel, Charlie Christian, Django Reinhardt and other jazz guitar greats, he got a six-string guitar and started teaching himself to play. As a teenager he played both instruments at venues in the Los Angeles area. He studied guitar with Jimmy Wyble when he was 16. In 1977–78 he studied jazz guitar at the Guitar Institute of Technology (GIT) in Hollywood with Herb Ellis, Joe Pass, and Howard Roberts. At GIT he assisted Roberts in organizing and preparing curriculum materials. Alden then conducted some of his own classes at GIT.

Musical career

Howard Alden Home

Alden made his first trip to the east coast in the summer of 1979, playing in a trio led by vibraphonist Red Norvo for three months at Resorts International in Atlantic City.

Howard Alden Howard Alden The 21st North Wales International Jazz Guitar

He moved to New York City in 1982 to play an extended engagement at the Café Carlyle with jazz pianist/songwriter Joe Bushkin. Soon afterwards, he was discovered by Joe Williams and Woody Herman. In 1983 he was already collaborating with Dick Hyman, when he appeared with him and a host of other musicians at Eubie Blake's one-hundredth birthday concert.

Howard Alden Riverwalk Jazz Stanford University Libraries

Alden formed the Alden-Barrett Quintet in 1985 with Dan Barrett, which played in the swing idiom, as he has done for most of his career. He also began partnerships with Kenny Davern and Jack Lesberg. He joined George Van Eps, innovator of the seven-string guitar, on tour and recorded albums with him, switching to the seven-string himself in 1992.

Personal life

Howard Alden Home

Alden lives in Manhattan. On January 10, 2015 he married Diane Carmen Garcia in San Marino, California.

Sweet and Lowdown

Howard Alden Interview with Howard Alden

Alden recorded the guitar performances for Sean Penn's character Emmet Ray in Woody Allen's 1999 film Sweet and Lowdown, and taught Penn how to mime the performances for the film. The score also featured Bucky Pizzarelli on rhythm guitar and arrangements by pianist Dick Hyman.


  • Best Emerging Guitar Talent, JazzTimes (1990)
  • Talent Deserving Wider Recognition, Down Beat (1992, 1993, 1995, 1996)
  • Guitar Player of the Year, American Guitar Museum (2003)
  • Top 75 Guitarists, Down Beat (2008)
  • References

    Howard Alden Wikipedia

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