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Guitarist Tommy Emmanuel to Perform Eighth Concert at Pepperdine

December 5, 2019  | 2 min read

Tommy EmmanuelTwo-time Grammy nominee Tommy Emmanuel, one of Australia’s most respected guitarists, will once again bring his passionate and infectious live show to Pepperdine University’s Smothers Theatre at 8 PM on Wednesday, December 11 and Thursday, December 12 at the Lisa Smith Wengler. Marking his eighth performance at Pepperdine, Emmanuel will be joined on stage by special guests Jim and Morning Nichols.

“Pepperdine has been honored to present Tommy Emmanuel regularly since 2006. His performances are always one of the highlights of our season,” said Rebecca Carson, managing director of the Center for the Arts. “He is a truly brilliant guitarist with a joyful and dynamic stage presence.

Emmanuel’s concerts are part of his tour supporting his new collaborative instrumental album recorded with John Knowles, Heart Songs, which was released on January 11 via CGP Sounds and distributed by Thirty Tigers. The 14-track album features Emmanuel and Knowles covering love songs recorded by a variety of artists, including the Bee Gees, Leonard Bernstein, and Billy Joel.

A world-renowned guitarist, songwriter, and singer, Emmanuel is known for his complex fingerstyle technique, energetic performances, and use of percussive effects on the guitar. With a musical repertoire that spans pop, jazz, blues, gospel, classical, flamenco, and aboriginal styles, his warm and soulful sound has won him hundreds of thousands of fans worldwide.

His unusual talent and life are common lore in Australia. Born into a musical family, Emmanuel first started playing guitar at the age of 4 and joined his family’s touring band just two years later. Following high school, he became one of Australia’s most in-demand rock musicians, playing guitar in a succession of bands, including one of Australia’s best-known acts, Dragon. He supplemented that with a side job as a studio musician, playing on recordings for Air Supply and Men at Work, as well as thousands of commercial jingles and tunes. In the 1980s he embarked on a successful solo career, and has released over 30 studio albums, and continues to intersect with some of the finest musicians throughout the world.

Emmanuel is one of only five musicians to hold the distinguished “Certified Guitar Player” (CGP) title from late music legend Chet Atkins. He has also received multiple awards by Guitar Player Magazine and was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia, an honor bestowed by the Queen in his homeland. He received two ARIA Awards from the Australian Recording Industry Association (the Aussie equivalent of the Recording Academy), performed during the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games in Sydney, and has collaborated with Eric Clapton, Doc Watson, and John Denver.

Jim Nichols’ impressive credentials include appearances on television, radio, concert halls, and clubs, including Carnegie Hall and The Tonight Show. He has played and/or recorded with Kenny Rankin, Chet Atkins, Hubert Laws, Buddy Montgomery, Van Morrison, Toots Thielemans, Tom Waits, among others. He has taught clinics in the US and in Europe, including Stanford and Jamie Aebersold Jazz Workshops.

Morning Nichols is a vivacious song stylist whose sound is pure and compelling. She has performed extensively at a variety of concerts, clubs, and festivals. Nichols has performed with Mark Murphy, Chet Atkins, Martin Taylor, Les Brown Big Band, and others. She was featured for seven years with the acclaimed Full Faith & Credit Big Band and has taught vocal clinics in Europe and the US, including Grammy in the Schools in San Francisco.

This event is sponsored by the Flamminio family and by Mary and Tom Hawkins.

Ticket prices range between $10 and $50 and are required for attendance. For additional information about this show, and to purchase tickets, visit the Center for the Arts website.