For the past 40 years Mike Cooper has traced a path completely his own as an international musical explorer, performing and recording, solo and in a number of inspired groupings and a variety of genres. With his roots lying in acoustic country blues he has, arguably, stretched the possibilities of the guitar even more than his better known contemporaries Davy Graham Bert Jansch John Renbourne etc. by pursuing it into the more avant-garde musical areas also occupied by contemporary guitar innovators such as Elliott Sharp, Keith Rowe, Fred Frith and Marc Ribot. with an eclectic mix of the many styles he has practiced over the years. Ranging freely through traditional country blues, folk, original songs, free improvisation, pop songs, exotica, electronic music, electro-acoustic music, and ‘sonic gestural’ playing utilising open tunings and extended techniques.
He is also a soundscape artist and film and video maker and performs live music for silent classic and contemporary films.
His favored instruments - a vintage 1930’s National tri-cone resophonic guitar played acoustically and/or ‘treated’ through a series of digital sampling and looping devices and his voice.
He is also a music journalist, writing features for magazines, particularly on Pacific music and musicians, a collector of Hawaiian shirts and appears on more records than he can remember.
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