Guitarist Ralph Conde Pays Homage To Haitian Musicians On New Album, Opens Online Guitar Clinic
The significant contributions of Haitian musicians to jazz are the heart of guitarist Ralph Conde’s latest release, Respe. His playing both tasteful and heartfelt, Conde delivers one inspired performance after another, his guitars scorching with raw passion and transcendent energy. The album is a potent overview of Caribbean sounds, which is apt since Conde is actually a guitar teacher as well; for those yearning for an intro to these Latin styles, Respe is an educational powerhouse.
Ironically, instructing students about the art of the guitar was originally not on Conde’s radar. “Because I travel so much with touring I never thought about teaching,” Conde revealed. “However, because so many people have approached me about teaching that I actually gave it some serious thought, and that's how the Guitar Clinic came about. The Guitar Clinic is doing very well, and I’m getting great reviews from past and current students.” Thanks to the Internet, Conde doesn’t have to physically be with his clients, opening the world to his keen insight into his mastery of the guitar. “For now, the classes are mostly online,” Conde explained. “The Guitar Clinic is easily accessible through my website. Since this is a self-paced class, anyone can sign up and join in at any time. Due to the success of Guitar Clinic, I just released a new DVD for anyone who wants to learn the kompa style, guitar rhythm, or notes.”
Conde’s recording career and his private instruction are an extension of his creative development. “My artistic evolution and growth comes in the sense of how I have come to incorporate other styles of music into my own,” Conde said. “At first that was not something I was prepared to do but I have evolved in allowing others in. I now run my own studio while preparing lessons for the Guitar Clinic. Other artists also consult me on projects. While I still travel, I am focusing more and more on writing, composing, and producing music.”