Flying Guitars Festival 2017 in Varazdin: Meet the Artists

Total Croatia News

Darko Gorenak Godar

Get to know some of the musicians playing at this year’s Flying Guitars Festival held in Varaždin from 13 to 15 October 2017.

Flying Guitars Festival 2017 in Varazdin: Meet the Artists

Get to know some of the musicians playing at this year’s Flying Guitars Festival held in Varaždin from 13 to 15 October 2017.

Conceived as a top-notch music event dedicated to guitar and guitar music, the second edition of Flying Guitars Festival will host renowned musicians and guitar players from Croatia and around the world.


Eric Gales

The second edition of Flying Guitars Festival will start off with a bang – with sensational performance of Eric Gales, who is known to be one of the best music interpreters of Jimi Hendrix. Joe Bonamassa described him as “one of the best, if not the best guitarist in the world”, while Carlos Santana, with whom he performed at Woodstock ’94, described him as “absolutely amazing”. In 2006, Gales was invited by Billy Cox and Buddy Miles – who played with Jimi Hendrix – to be the main guitarist for the recording of the album ” The Band of Gypsys Return”.  Born in 1974 in Memphis, Tennesee, Gales, also known as Raw Dawg, was a child prodigy. He picked up the guitar at the age of four. His older brothers taught him how to play the guitar in the style of Jimi Hendrix, Albert King, B.B. King and others. His brother, who was left-handed, taught Gales to play a right-handed Stratocaster guitar “upside-down” (with the bass E string on the bottom), although Gales himself is not left-handed.

From his early beginnings, Gales was more focused on performing, which is why he recorded his first album in 1991, entitled The Eric Gales Band, together with drummer Hubert Crawford, after already having garnered hundreds of thousands of fans with his energetic live performances. During that time, he started winning awards and having his first radio hits. So far, he has released 18 albums and has participated in the recording of 31 albums with various other musicians mostly of the blues genre or inspired by Jimi Hendrix, with whom he is continually compared, Eric Clapton, Robert Johnson, Jimmy Page, Joe Bonamassa and Carlos Santana.

Yogi Lonich

Yogi Lonich, an American musician of Croatian origin, will perform on Saturday at 21.30. Lonich, who was born and raised in California, had an honour to play with Jimi’s longtime friends and band members – bassist Billy Cox and drummer Mitch Mitchell – at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame opening of the Jimi Hendrix exhibition. Music became a major part of Yogi’s life after having moved to L.A. as a high school student. He then became a long-time guitarist in Chris Cornell’s band, musician best known as the singer and guitarist of the American rock band Soundgarden.

Yogi has shared the stage and/or recorded with an impressive list of artists including Melissa Etheridge, Booker T Jones, Natasha Bedingfield, Kenny Loggins, Nikka Costa, Anastacia, Five For Fighting, Daniel Powter and Meredith Brooks, and he also toured in support of rock legendes such as The Rolling Stones, Robert Plant, Aerosmith, AC/DC, KISS, Lenny Kravitz, Linkin Park and Korn. Yogi Lonich will a p(l)ay a tribute to perform Chris Cornell, together with Robert Vnuk and Friends.

Ratko Zjača and ZZ Quartet

One of the key programme features of the Festival of Flying Guitars is innovation, which will come to the fore on Ratko Zjača concert held on Sunday. Ratko Zjača is recognized as an innovative and technically advanced guitarist known for his individualist improvisational style. He has played with some of the most influential jazz musicians as a session guitarist and has also released many original albums. He is a highly versatile player covering many areas of music but is best known for his work in modern jazz, free improvisation and world music. He After having graduated from Zagreb University, Ratko enrolled in Rotterdam Conservatory where he studied jazz guitar, composition and Indian classical music. He also studied at New York University School of Music. Contemporary guitarist, composer, performer and pedagogue, Ratko Zjača is considered a highly gifted stylist.

Nenad Resnik and The Fairpoint Station

Varaždin guitarist and composer Nenad Resnik and his band The Fairpoint Station will take the stage on Sunday at 7 pm. Resnik has been in the music business for a long time. Resnik learned to play violin and piano at the Music School, while learning guitar all by himself at the age of 12. Since 1981, he has various Varaždin rock, jazz and country & western bands. His career took to a new level in 2005 by collaborating with saxophonist Gordan Perez on the

jazz project “Nenad Resnik Electric Swing”. In 2006, Resnik formed a touring band The Farpoint Station” which appeared on his first album “Return Of The Son Of The Monster From The Yellow Lagoon II”. The second album entitled “Astral Neighborhood” was released in 2008, and in 2014, Resnik released the third album with his band The Fairpoint Station entitled “Urgent Intervention”, for which he won the Los Angeles Academy Award for Best EP Album in the Alternative Rock category in 2016.

The Fairpoint Station consists of Neven Resnik on keyboards, Gordan Perši on saxophone, Boris Beštak on drums and Ferdinand Buhanec on bass.

Zack Dust & Jura Geci

Zack Dust is a musician from Varaždin and a former frontman of the well-known Varaždin rock group Voodoo Lizards, which gained a lot of popularity in the USA back in the day. Zack has recently released a solo debut album entitled Other Side of Ocean, which was produced by the Hollywood producer Robi Banerji, who has worked with famous bands such as The Rolling Stones, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Herbie Hancock and Jewel. The musicians who participated in the making of his album were nothing short of great: Phil Jones, the drummer of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and Fuzzbee Morse, the multi-instrumentalist who has played with the likes of Frank Zappa, Bono Vox, Lou Reed, Peter Gabriel and many others. Zack has already promoted his album in Los Angeles clubs such as Whiskey A Go Go, Viper Room and Rainbow. At this year’s Flying Guitar Festival, Zack Dust will perform Voodoo Lizzards songs together with Jura Geci.

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