Virtuoso guitarist coming to Boulevard Music

FROM ITALY TO CULVER CITY—Solo guitarist Alberto Lombardi makes his first Boulevard Music appearance on Jan. 10. Photo courtesy of A. Lombardi

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On Friday, Boulevard Music welcomes virtuoso guitarist Alberto Lombardi, an internationally renowned acoustic solo, finger-style, and electric rock player, according to the music store’s publicity piece.

In 2018, Lombardi was listed among the eight artists to watch by “Vintage Guitar Magazine.” He was also named among the 10 emerging finger-style guitarists in the world by “Guitar Masters Poland.”

For local concert fans, Lombardi will be in concert from 8 to 10 p.m., Friday, Jan. 10 at Boulevard Music, 4316 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City. Tickets are $17.50 and can be purchased at 310-398-2583.

Lombardi started his guitar lessons at 12 but said he adapted a serious attitude for music in high school. After he completed an obligational military duty in his native Italy in1994, Lombardi moved to Hollywood, Calif., where he studied at the Musician’s Institute — and where he graduated.

Lombardi returned to Italy and worked as a “sideman” in Pop Music, touring extensively for the past 20 years. Then the light inside went on, he said.

“Recently I developed a huge passion for solo Acoustic guitar music,” he said. “(I) started touring with my solo act. It’s a new musical life for me and it’s starting to take shape.”

Now he’s zeroing in on certain musical influences, he noted.

“In this acoustic new journey, I love Tommy Emmanuel and his main Influences, like Chet Atkins, but I put all my pop and rock background in it,” Lombardi said. “Also some Italian flavor, playing many classics from the Italian tradition all rearranged for acoustic guitar. Like ‘Volare,’ or ‘O’ Sole Mio.’ In pop music, I’m a huge Sting fan, and I sing a little in my shows as well, some of my songs and a cover or two.”

His rock influences are Gilmour and Steve Vai, which he acknowledges as an “unusual” combo.

Lombardi said on his present tour, his style can be described as “acoustic solo guitar, finger-style, so you can expect a Tommy Emmanuel like vibe if you’re familiar with the genre, but with lots of Italian seasoning and some sung songs as well,” he said. “Oh and I love to make little music loops and solo over with a little bit of distortion, on the acoustic.”

He believes that for his particular style, the U.S. music scene is where there is the most appreciation.

“There’s a lot of festivals for acoustic guitar, and series,” Lombardi said. “I’ll be also playing in Santa Barbara on (Jan.) 12th and in Berkeley on the 24th, so I’d say it’s alive. There is a sense of community around the guitar, but this is my first tour in the U.S., so I’m curious as well.”

This will be Lombardi’s first appearance at Boulevard Music.

“I’m super excited so many great guitarists played there!,” he said of the Culver City music store and venue. “I actually just dropped an email and they were super responsive and happy to have me. Quite amazing!”

The Italian musician said he will bring a lot of energy and diversity to his Friday performance.

“Lots of solo acoustic guitar, my arrangements of divers music like the Beatles and Italian traditional, some Jazzy songs, some originals,” Lombardi said. “I’d say Chet and Tommy meet Gilmour meet Sting. With all due humble proportions and respect!”

He has two acoustic guitar albums, as well as instructional videos on DVD. Later this year, Lombardi plans to release his first English-language pop record.