Both as a solo performer and as a member of the San Francisco Guitar Quartet, Matthew Fish has specialized in playing works by contemporary composers. Indeed, he first showed up on our radar when he sent us his excellent 2016 debut CD, From Her Source to the Sea, which consists entirely of pieces by the fine Swedish guitarist/composer Johannes Möller.
“I first encountered Johannes’ music after he won the GFA competition in 2010,” Matthew told us recently. “I played his piece Song to the Mother for him in a master class when he was on tour and we stayed in touch over the years. When I got the idea to make a CD, I approached him about writing a piece for my album. When he sent me the finalized version of Nocturne No.1, he sent along his other music with it. I was immediately entranced by all of it, especially his pieces inspired by Indian classical music. I wanted to do something unique for my first CD, so I decided to run with the idea of doing an entire album of his music. I feel very honored that he trusted me to do nine world premiere recordings for this CD and I’m quite relieved that he was very happy about the final product.”
Not surprisingly, when Matthew stopped by our studio for Classical Guitar Sessions, his Kenny Hill guitar in hand, he elected to play a pair of pieces from the Möller CD: A Star in the Sky, a Universe Within requires a capo and features some interesting tremolo work; while the album’s hypnotic title piece, From Her Source to the Sea, is played in an open G-minor tuning and is clearly influenced by Indian classical music.
Matthew received his master’s degree in music in 2012 from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he studied with another great modern guitarist/composer, Sérgio Assad.