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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Oct. 7: Acoustic Guitar Wizard Tim Sparks to Perform at Minnesota State Mankato

Award-winning guitarist Tim Sparks will perform.

Minnesota State University, Mankato Music Department News Release, 9-17-2012

MANKATO, Minn. – Acoustic guitarist Tim Sparks (pictured left) will perform Sunday, October 7 at Minnesota State Mankato. The Performance Series concert will be at at 7:30 p.m. in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts, 320 Maywood Ave.

Tim Sparks is an award-winning guitarist whose blending of musical styles has won him extensive praise from all corners of the music world. Guitar Player Magazine has called his music "Fresh, exotic, and totally cool.", Acoustic Guitar Magazine calls it "rich and sensuous", and guitarist Leo Kottke simply says "He's really one of the best musicians I know." From the early traditional country blues and gospel music he learned in the Blue Ridge Mountains to the Jazz, Be Bop, classical and world music from his varied career across the U. S. and Europe, Tim has thrilled and inspired audiences and musicians world-wide.

You can approach guitarist Tim Sparks’s music from several directions. You can enter through Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite, originally arranged for orchestra, rearranged by Sparks for six strings, a feat that won him the 1993 National Fingerstyle Guitar Championship. You can look for other CDs he's made for the German Acoustic Music label. You can track down recordings by the Twin Cities jazz group Rio Nido, popular during the 1970s and 80s, and still sorely missed. You can enter through the bluegrass and jazz Sparks heard as a child, and finally got around to recording on his new release, Sidewalk Blues (Tonewood, 2009). Or you can walk through the door marked Radical Jewish Culture, a series on John Zorn's Tzadik label. Starting in 1999 with the solo album Neshamah, Sparks has made five recordings for Tzadik. His latest, 2009's Little Princess, is a collection of tunes by Naftule Brandwein, aka Nifty, "The King of the Klezmer Clarinet." It’s an elegant, polyglot, sophisticated recording of World Music for the 21st century.

Concert admission is $12; $11 for students with a valid MavCard. Discount tickets are available online for University students. Advance purchase is strongly encouraged. Those who wish to purchase tickets online should go to For more information, call the Performance Series office, (507) 389-5549. 

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