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Artist of the Month for March 2005: Todd Habekost

Name: Todd Habekost

Age: 35

Town: North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Hometown (if different from current town): Red Deer, Alberta, Canada

At what age did you start playing guitar and why?
Age 13, I liked the way it sounded and it was a lot cooler then Piano lessons.

First guitar: A Mann Acoustic.

Early Influences:
The who, Jimi Hendrix, Rolling Stones, the same as everyone else!!

First gig:
Playing in a Jazz Big Band at the Red Deer College. Terrified! Found out that adrenaline and Alcohol don't mix very well.

Acoustic Guitars you own:
Just one, a Larrivee OM-9

Favourite Guitar:
My Larrivee

Your Style, and how you developed it:
 Contemporary Celtic. I use this Term loosely as I do a lot of different things but it all revolves around the Acoustic guitar. It developed by becoming involved in Traditional music, French music through the band Malicorne, then hearing Scottish music, in particular Tony Mcmanus and The Old Blind Dogs featuring the great singer Ian Benzie. Not knowing anyone who I could play with I put down my pick and started playing fingerstyle and became largely a solo artist.

  Before I heard Tony I played the melody of tunes kind of like block chording or on the Bass strings. Then I heard him and Breton guitarist Soig Siberil and moved the melody lines to the top two strings. Now I am finally trying to work in things by my all time favourite guitarist, Pat Metheny. A little bit more colour although Tony is great at that as well.

Practice Regimen:
I usually work on trouble spots in tunes. If I screw something up on a gig I will practice that. My best practice routine is writing songs that I can't play! I will compose a tune then try to play it at tempo and find out I have to learn how to play it. There is still one tune I wrote a couple of years ago that I still can't play live because I haven't got a good enough handle on it yet. My technique has yet to catch up with my writing which is better then the other way around!!

Favourite Artist(s):
Tony Mcmanus, Pat Metheny, Old Blind Dogs, Led Zeppelin, Beethoven, Bach.

Is there anything else you want people to know about you, your playing style or your views on today's music in general?

My music is really about playing a good tune. I donít worry about being a "Guitar player" but rather worry about being a musician. I think that is what sets Tony McManus apart. He plays these great Scottish songs and doesn't ruin them by trying to be flashy. Pat Metheny besides being a great Guitar player writes great tunes. I think a lot of people missed the boat on Led Zeppelin. All their records are about a mood, a song and a sound. That is what I try to do. I think the Acoustic guitar is the greatest of all instruments and I love being a Guitar player.

To learn more about Todd and hear his music, please visit www.toddhabekost.com
If you are a guitarist with a cd out and would like to be featured here please contact me.

AOTM Archives:

August 2008 - Danny Combs
March 2006 - Bryan Clark
Februry 2006 - Darin Leong
January 2006 - Andy McKee
December 2005 - Don Alder
November 2005 - Doug Young
October 2005 - Nancy Conescu
August - September 2005 - Warren Greig
July 2005 - Ian Melrose
June 2005 - Roger Lasley
May 2005 - Jim Tozier
April 2005 - Jessica Papkoff
March 2005 - Todd Habekost
February 2005 - Michael Hewett
January 2005 - Steve Barney
December 2004 - Tony McManus
November 2004 - Chris Newman
October 2004 - Kevin Kastning
September 2004 - Rick Duke
August 2004 - El McMeen
June-July 2004 - Charles David Alexander
May 2004 - Tony Capri
April 2004 - Shane Simpson
March 2004 - Bill Cooley
February 2004 - Greg Meckes
January 2004 - Gary Leek
December 2003 - Ernie Hawkins
November 2003 - Keith Knight
October 2003 - Jaquie Gipson
September 2003 - Chuck Durfor
August 2003 - Cathy Horner
July 2003 - Art Edelstein
June 2003 - Muriel Anderson
May 2003 - Clarelynn Rose
March-April 2003 - Steve Wildey
February 2003 - Rick Ruskin
January 2003 - Kerry Kling
December 2002 - Tim O'Brien
November 2002 - Howard Emerson
October 2002 - Dennis Roger Reed
September 2002 - Larry Pattis
August 2002 - Paul Asbell