Leading up to our Ignition Duo show, we will be writing about a few of our composers and performers! Nick Bacchetto told us a Lagunitas Logo- Circle Dog (1)bit about himself in preparation for the big show at the Center for New Music.

Be sure to check out the show at the Center for New Music on February 27.

Tickets will be available at the door, and rest assured we will have Lagunitas beer present, as they have offered their generous support of the arts.


The modern day electric guitar is one of the most widely played musical instruments in the world, owing largely to its versatility, its affordability and its omnipresence in ‘popular’ musical styles. Sadly, due to the image-over-substance culture fostered by YouTube and Nick_Bacchetto_photomuch of the internet community as a whole, the instrument is rarely explored intelligently. The electric guitar does, however, offer remarkable room for growth and development in light of the instrument’s relatively recent rise to prominence in the 1950’s (when compared, for example, to the rich and robust history of the modern day piano or violin). As such, the Ignition Duo stands as a bulwark against the glibness and superficiality that threatens to undermine guitar-based music through their commissioning and performing of new musical works by artists interesting in exploring the full range of the electric guitar’s sonic capabilities. The duo’s deftness, attention to detail and willingness to explore new techniques, ideas and idioms places them at the center of a growing community of artists who seek to elevate the electric guitar’s repertory to a level of maturity and vitality on par with many of today’s modern symphonic instruments.

In our current socio-economic climate, it is difficult to justify the importance of exploring anything at all without resorting to a line of reasoning, the conclusion of which ‘proves’ that our activities will result in an increase in GDP (whether real or imagined). It seems to me, however, that the only reason the men and women of the arts and sciences explore anything is to participate in the collective enterprises of trying to answer important questions with rigor and integrity, describing the world in terms of what is actually the case and expanding human knowledge. That so many people continue to devote themselves to these aims, in absence of any significant monetary gain, is a testament to the worthwhileness of these endeavors.
nick_bacchetto_photo2

In regard to whether this type of music making has a place today, this question can be interpreted in two ways – one trivial, the other incoherent. The trivial interpretation assumes the question is asking about a descriptive claim, i.e. “does this type of music making actually occur in our society.” So long as organizations such as the Guerrilla Composers Guild and groups such as the Ignition Duo exist and remain active in our communities, then this music de facto has a place today. The incoherent interpretation assumes the question is asking about a normative claim along the lines of “should this music have a place today.” It isn’t the case that works of art should or shouldn’t have a place in a society, they simply do have a place in all societies of which we have record. As long as there are artists brave and defiant enough to create new works, there will always be a place in society for meaningful artistic and aesthetic discourse, and that which makes us fully human will endure.

The mere existence of groups such as the GCG is an open act of defiance against the commercialist agenda. They ensure that voices which are in threat of being marginalized, silenced, or cast adrift amidst the noise of today’s [plurality = aesthetic truth] approach to art are actually heard in a forum that is both powerful and meaningful. The tremendous effort and energy devoted by the GCG members toward their activities is nothing short of heroic.


The Guerrilla Composers Guild is a fiscally-sponsored affiliate of the San FranciscoSFFCM smaller Friends of Chamber Music, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the service of chamber music in California.

Please consider making a donation to help us put on our future shows! We are proud to be fiscally sponsored by the San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music, and would love it if you considered donating. If you would like to donate goods or have a special request with a donation, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

The show is also supported in part by Lagunitas, and we are so excited to feature their beers for your enjoyment!Lagunitas Logo- Beer Speaks (1)

Ignition Duo Interviews – Composer Nick Bacchetto

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: