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John Fahey

John Fahey (1939 - 2001) was an American guitarist and composer, and one of the first guitarists to perform solo works for the steel-string acoustic guitar. His music defies categorization, drawing inspiration from American folk music, blues, classical music, Brazilian music and Indian music. In several of his later works, he experimented with dissonance and noise; these later works have been compared with musique concrete and industrial music.

He founded the Takoma label in the 1960s, which helped launch the career of fellow fingerstyle guitarists Leo Kottke, Peter Lang, and Robbie Basho.

Fahey was also noted for his writing skills, having written voluminous liner notes which (among other things) satirized the folk music scholarship of his day. He is the author of two books: Charley Patton, an analysis of the famous Delta bluesman, and How Bluegrass Music Destroyed My Life, a book of essays and autobiographical fiction.