Since the 1980's, Eric Johnson has been one of the most critically acclaimed rock guitarists, as evidenced by the success of such releases as 'Ah Via Musicom,' 'Venus Isle,' and his latest offering, 'Up Close.' And soon, Johnson will be launching his summer tour to continue support of his latest album, fresh off of appearances on the West Coast Experience Hendrix Tour, as well as teaming up with Anton Fig and Will Lee of Late Night fame for a rousing rare performance at New York City's P.C. Richards and Sons Theatre.
From July 7th through August 20th, Johnson will be touring the USA from coast to coast as a headliner, as well as joining forces with fellow guitar great Steve Miller for shows at the Sleep Country Amphitheater in Clark County, Washington on July 17th and the DTE Energy Music Theatre in Clarkston, Michigan, on August 7th. He will also join the legendary Buddy Guy on July 21 in Omaha, Nebraska at the Red Sky Music Festival. The band members on the Summer Tour will be long time favorite Chris Maresh on bass guitar and Wayne Salzmann on drums, playing his first tour with Eric.
Also recently released was a vinyl version of 'Up Close,' issued on 180 gram vinyl, and housed in a beautiful special double LP gatefold package with printed sleeves. Additionally, 'Up Close' was remastered specially for this vinyl release by Jim Wilson.
A long time in the making , 'Up Close' has received rave reviews. All Music Guide pointed out that "[Johnson] continues to find interesting ways to hone his specific craft on 'Up Close'," while Premier Guitar Magazine raved "Johnson has created another worthy addition to his already legendary catalog." Also, it shouldn't be overlooked that 'Up Close' features an impressive list of special guests (Sonny Landreth, Steve Miller, Jimmie Vaughan, and Jonny Lang).
Speaking to M Music Magazine, Eric had the following to say about what his goals were for 'Up Close.' "To ﬁnd new ways of doing things. We’re all the sum of our history. After a while, we start to create certain patterns in what we do. I wanted to break some of that repetition. If you keep to the same format, the vibe stays the same, even though the music might change. If you want to grow, you have to break down walls and ﬁnd ways to work that are different from the past."
Additionally, Johnson graced the cover of this year's March issue of Guitar Player Magazine, was recently named Guitar International's "Guitarist of the Year," and has won an unprecedented 33 awards at the Austin Music Awards since 1982, including taking home "Best Electric Guitar," "Best Acoustic Guitar," and "Best Instrumental Band" awards at this year's ceremony.
Johnson has long been considered one of rock's most talented six-string players, as evidenced by his aforementioned platinum-certified 1990 release, 'Ah Via Musicom," its hit single "Cliffs of Dover," as well as a Grammy Award win for "Best Rock Instrumental Performance" in 1991. The song also recently was introduced to a whole new generation of rock fans, when it was featured in the hit videogame, 'Guitar Hero.'
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