Pat Metheny (born August 12, 1954) is an American jazz guitarist and composer. He is the leader of the Pat Metheny Group and is also involved in duets, solo works and other side projects. His style incorporates elements of progressive and contemporary jazz, post-bop, Latin jazz and jazz fusion. Metheny has three gold albums and 20 Grammy Awards. He is the brother of jazz flugelhornist and journalist Mike Metheny.
As a young musician, Metheny did everything he could to sound like Wes Montgomery, but when he was 14 or 15, he decided that he felt that it was disrespectful to imitate him. Metheny's playing (as well as his tone) also show significant influence by Hall, Joe Diorio, Kenny Burrell, Joe Pass, McLaughlin and other classic jazz players. Metheny has often been quoted saying that he is as likely to name non-guitarists as significant stylistic influences as fellow guitar players, giving as examples players like Clifford Brown and John Coltrane. He has stated that Miles Davis' live album Four & More was hugely influential on his pursuit into jazz music.
He has also admitted to being heavily influenced by the Beatles, going so far as to say that everything by the Beatles has impacted him as a musician. He has paid significant attention to the evolution of guitar playing across genres, and is familiar with the playing of notables from the likes of rock guitarists Eddie Van Halen to Leo Kottke.
Metheny was also one of the first jazz guitarists to make heavy use of the Roland GR-300 Guitar Synthesizer saying, "you have to stop thinking about it as a guitar, because it no longer is a guitar". His approach is as if he were a horn player, and he prefers the "high trumpet" sound of the instrument. He also plays a custom-made Pikasso created by Canadian luthier Linda Manzer.
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