Born: 1957 Primary Instrument: Guitar
Hans Tammen creates music that has been described as an alien world of bizarre textures and a journey through the land of unending sonic operations. He produces rapid-fire juxtapositions of radically contrastive and fascinating sounds, with micropolyphonic timbres and textures, aggressive sonic eruptions, but also quiet pulses and barely audible noises - through means of his ENDANGERED GUITAR and interactive software programming, by working with the room itself, and, as a critic observed, with his ...fingers stuck in a high voltage outlet. Signal To Noise called his works ...a killer tour de force of post-everything guitar damage, All Music Guide recommended him: ...clearly one of the best experimental guitarists to come forward during the 1990s.
His numerous projects include site-specific performances and collaborative efforts with dance, light, video, and theatre, utilizing technology from planetarium projectors to guitar robots and disklavier pianos. He received a Fellowship from the New York Foundation of the Arts (NYFA) in the category Digital/Electronic Arts in 2009 for the ENDANGERED GUITAR - a hybrid guitar/software instrument used to control interactive live sound processing. His THIRD EYE ORCHESTRA open form compositions for large ensembles and live sound processing, or all-electronic ensembles, are inspired by Earle Brown's Available Forms, and based on numerous scored building blocks that are constantly rearranged when performed.
His works have been presented on festivals in the US, Canada, Mexico, Russia, Ukraine, India and all over Europe. He recorded on labels such as Innova, ESP- DISK, Nur/Nicht/Nur, Creative Sources, Leo Records, Potlatch, Cadence, and Hybrid.
...clearly one of the best experimental guitarists to come forward during the 1990s. (François Couture, All Music Guide)
Hans Tammen has his own way of playing the guitar... (New York Times)
...one of the most ferociously talented and inventive guitarists to emerge in the last ten years. His technique is noisy and percussive, his energy relentless and unstoppable. (Richard Cochrane, Musings)
White-hot solo guitar work... Recent years have seen a slew of fine free guitarists emerge..., but nothing they've done so far packs this kind of punch... (Dan Warburton, Signal to Noise)
Guitarist Hans Tammen, born in Germany and now resident in New York, has over the past few years developed a highly individual and effective method of interfacing his endangered guitar with electronics (i.e. a laptop)... (Dan Warburton, ParisTransatlantic)
Tammen, an incredibly confounding and visionary improviser on acoustic and electric guitar... (Steve Brydges, Copperpress)
Now that Hans Tammen is settled in the States, the German experimentalist best known for playing endangered guitar is becoming a lightning rod for European improvisers who share his fearlessness. (Time Out New York)
Charlie Christian and Les Paul knew they were on to something, something new and perhaps revolutionary, but they could hardly have imagined the things that Hans Tammen does to guitar, and the sounds he coaxes from it. (Brian Marley, Avant Magazine)
Musique sans concession... la provocante guitare de Hans Tammen. (Luc Bouquet, ImproJazz)
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