In many cases all worldwide known musicians are from the United States. This is because of the American music industry marketing and huge market. Whereas in countries where the music industry is not that developed, sometimes it is not possible for good musicians to obtain the recognition and commercial success they might have deserved.

This time we will tell you about Alexey Liapko ( Алексей Ляпко) – musician, composer, solo guitar virtuoso who is fluent in acoustic and electric guitar – jazz, blues, flamenco and other musical styles; in addition, he is interpreting his own, individual manner. He has completed the French horn class in Dushanbe in Tajikistan, completed the self-taught guitar, cultivating it to the incomprehensible virtuosity. During the Soviet era, he was one of the best guitarists in the USSR. For many years he lived in Germany and St. Petersburg. Liapko collaborated with such well-known both worldwide and in Latvia musicians as Paul Bollenback, Garry Burt, Raimonds Raubiško, Olga Pīrāgs, Andre Yevsukov, Ieva Kerēvica, Jam Orchestra (LV) and many others.

Although Alexey has played in a variety of configurations ranging from duos and trios, ending with big bands, he feels best when playing one, just like Joe Pass and Tuck Andress, himself alone providing a full musical performance. Alexey Liapko plays guitar at a professionally very high level in all aspects. As Alexey has said about his playing: “I am thinking as a piano player creating polyphonic melodies, chords and bass lines and rhythm section at a time.” His chord combinations and phrases are carefully thought over, indicating a high level of jazz harmony knowledge. Also tonality of compositions is chosen so as to be able to combine the playing in the top positions, together with free strings, thus using all possibilities of guitars sound range. He plays both with fingers and mediators (plectrums), using different rake, hammer and pulloff methods in playing arpeggiosometimes using the slide. Nevertheless, the so-called bends (sounds made with the left hand fingers stretching strings) are used rarely, because he believes that this approach is more typical to rock guitar players and it is not necessary for him as a musician with classical education.  Melodic lines and phrases that he uses are subtly simple. All this leaves a strong impression on the audience, unwittingly creating the desire to listen to it all over and over again. In their reviews such musicians as Martin Taylor (USA), Paul Bollenback (USA), Alexandr Starostenko (RU) Aivars Hermanis (LV) and many others have appreciated his guitar playing.

Alexey Liapko currently resides in Riga and has recorded and published a number of new tracks. First of all, his jazz standards solo record “BLUES FOR JOE” should be mentioned  in which Alexey has arranged and interpreted such evergreen compositions as “One Note Samba” (A. C. Jobim), “Afro Blue” (J.Coltrane),”Spain” (C .Corea). The album also includes his own original compositions like “Funky Town”, “Prairie ” and ‘Boogy’. , just as an arrangement of the Latvian folk song “Pūt, vējiņi“. All songs are arranged for one guitar and performed in a fingerpicking manner (resounding strings with the right hand fingers, without using mediators).

Another his latest solo record isAlexey Liapko – Virtuoso”, which summarizes his best original compositions for acoustic guitar. This selection includes elements of folk and funk, blues and jazz, samba, tango and flamenco music merged together.  Although the tracks are played on one guitar, sometimes it feels like an ensemble of several people is playing. The music is very much felt, emotional and beautiful. It is characterized by quiet intimacy and isolation from modern urban society.

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The third record “Белые Ночи” (White Nights) is dedicated to a song genre. In this album Alexey Liapko reveals himself as a songwriter, poet and singer. All songs are in Russian, in a subdued “cocktailbar” style and, of course, about love. Alexey acknowledges that the cause of this music is truly survived events in the artist’s life. Besides guitars,  Dmitry Archangel has recorded keyboards, and Leonid Nisarevs – double bass. All his records are available for purchase on CD at his own performances, as well as it is possible to hear them on internet radio

Alexey Liapko’s life is exciting. As a traveling troubadour, nothing on earth can keep him in one place. Here he plays in Riga, there in St. Petersburg, Kazan, or the the cities of Germany. And you never know where he will end up. However, he is confident that all the best is yet to come – concerts, studio recordings and co-operation projects with outstanding musicians and a good manager. This is what we wish him as well.



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