Guitarist Bill Frisell, with his delicate, rootsy playing, has established himself as one of the pioneers of the genre. He owes this pioneering spirit to the fact that from the very beginning he’s always established himself more as a musician in general than a guitarist in specific. Frisell has always been very open-minded towards all sorts of music. He’s always been busy developing a very personal sound, opposed to augmenting the number of executed notes per minute. The fact that the typical Frisell style of playing breathes like a wind instrument, may be traced back to the fact that he started out as a clarinet player, who, just for fun, also fooled around on the guitar. At one time he even considered a career in classical music. In high school he played rock and R&B with Philip Bailey, Andrew Woolfork and Larry Dunn, guys who would later resurface in the funk band Earth, Wind & Fire. It was the music of Wes Montgomery that persuaded him to become a jazz musician. However, he chose not to become the umtieth bebop guitarist. With his steel guitar reminiscent
style of playing he has always straddled the worlds of both jazz and American folk and country music.