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Coming February 10th, 2023

Available February 10th, 2023

America's First African-American Classical Guitarist

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Listen To a Sample of the First Track 

Delta Kappa Epsilon March Sample
00:00 / 01:03

Featuring Several World Premieres

Justin Holland was an African American, born free in Norfolk, Virginia. He was the most influential and important American guitarist of the 19th century and wrote the first published and best-selling guitar method in the country. He was also a leading voice in the anti-slavery and civil rights movements. As a composer he synthesized European models and embraced popular, church and parlor songs generating a rich variety of works. A master of virtuosic variations, his arrangements are witty, elegant, and colorful, and culminate in Carnival of Venice, which shows the full range of his gifts, sweeping in breadth and dazzling in effect.

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As a Black musician, Mallett’s work writes a more complete history of our instrument in America. This program is a time stamp of late 19th-century American music. Holland takes us on this journey through folk, church, parlour and dance songs that sing through the solo guitar.

-Kim Perlak, Chair - Berklee College of Music Guitar Program


Recorded at the University of California, Santa Cruz

Produced and Engineered by William Coulter

Edited by Drew Henderson

Mastered by Sienna Digital

Cover Art by Keith Mallett

Liner Notes by Kim Perlak

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