Kevin Kastning

Kevin Kastning, born December 26, 1961 in Wichita (Kansas), is an American guitarist and composer. He is a 36-string Double Contraguitar player, 30-string Contra Soprano guitarist, twelve-string guitar and six-string guitarist. Kastning was born in Wichita in 1961. His father was a musician and he played the guitar at age 11. He also played in the Wichita East High School jazz band and in various other bands. Kastning graduated with a Bachelor in Music from Wichita State University in 1984 and 1980. Walter Mays, a Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, taught Kastning composition. Kastning, who was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1985, moved to Boston, Massachusetts where he completed 2 years of graduate studies at Berklee College of Music. While studying at Berklee with John la Porta and Walter Beasley, Kastning was privately tutored in guitar by Pat Metheny. He was a member of numerous jazz chambers, including playing at clubs in the Boston and Hartford areas, as well as his own jazz group, the Kevin Kastning Unit. In 1988, he released a self-titled CD. Kastning and Carl Clements, on soprano and tenor saxophones, formed the Kevin Kastning Unit. Kastning has recorded many notable contemporary classical guitar recordings together since that time. These recordings are mostly improvised. Kastning uses a variety of guitar family instruments, including a 36-string Double Contraguitar and a 30-string Contra Soprano guitar. He also plays a 6-string bass-baritone guitar and a 12-string extended guitar. There is also a 12-string alto and a 12-string extended guitar. His music is consistently well-received in experimental acoustic music communities and other modern abstract traditions. Ken Browne, an Irish painter featured abstract paintings inspired by Kastning’s music in his March 2011 exhibition at Origin Art Gallery (Dublin). Kastning invented many guitar family instruments that expand the traditional guitar’s range. Kastning is an artist promoter for Santa Cruz Guitar Company and Daniel Roberts Stringworks.

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