The Long and Winding Road
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Reviews
"Spread over two well-filled discs, here is a very interesting and beautifully 
played set of some of the most well-known songs ever written. Variety is 
the order of the day, as Thomas has made every effort to arrange each 
successive piece for a new combination, so you get on the one hand a 
number of solo classical arrangements such as Her Majesty, which becomes 
delightfully ragtime in feel, a cheeky "From Me To You", a slightly exotic 
"If I Fell", next to "Hello Goodbye" for two steel-string guitars, "Help", for 
three mandolins and a steel-strung guitar, "Come Together" for four steel-
strings, a jazz guitar and a bass guitar, and even "I Feel Fine" for bottleneck 
slide guitar!

This is all beautifully done, lots of fun and all wonderfully played and 
should be owned by anyone interested in fine guitar playing, and/or the 
music of the Beatles."
[Chris Dumigan, Classical Guitar magazine] 
Sample Track excerpts

"This two-disc project showcases Thomas' impressive technique on several acoustic instruments: steel string guitar, classical guitar, mandolin, 12-string, bottleneck slide, bass guitar and a banjulele. The Atlanta native multi-tracks his solo playing so that some songs may have three or five or eight instruments interweaving simultaneously, a prodigious undertaking in and of itself. However, what strikes one most about this collection is Thomas' bold arrangements. While Thomas plays a few of these "straight," he turns a few entirely on their ears, and fusses and tinkers with the rest. Straight, with only one instrument, and quite nicely done are "Yesterday," "Here, There and Everywhere," "If I Fell," and "In My Life." Happily, no surprises there. But Thomas takes the feverishly adolescent exuberance of "She Loves You" and transforms it into a lovely, achy, mature love song. It's a completely fresh reading and beautiful -- and it's pure genius....Thomas offers plenty of other fodder for discussion, but there's no denying his fine guitar work. And his new arrangements of old classics allow us to chew on some chestnuts with fresh ears." [Minor7th.com]

"The great merit of these versions is based primarily on the imaginative arrangements (ranging from jazz to pop through blues and classical), but also in the versatile and sensitive way of playing of this wonderful musician… The result is a delight to hear, and to name but a few, we have greatly enjoyed his visions of 'Help', 'In My Life', "Because" and 'Norwegian Wood'" [The Beatles' Garden fanclub magazine]

The Background
"A 2-CD set of Beatles arrangements? You must be joking!"

Such was my reaction to my music-industry-mogul friend Jorge Hernandez when he suggested the idea 
that led to this recording. The mere thought of it made the eyeballs roll skyward in knowing kitsch-
anticipation, conjuring up images of muzak Yesterdays and William Shatner "singing" Lucy in the Sky…. 
Though I had arranged and played many times in concert classical guitar versions of Here, There and 
Everywhere and In My Life, I didn't believe that there was any way that a whole CD of Beatles arranged 
for solo nylon-string guitar was going to be artistically successful.

But then a few ideas started to come--not just of straight classical guitar versions, but a whole menagerie
of plucked-string instruments playing in different combinations, and of ways of re-interpreting these 
greatest works of the pop canon, of seeing them in a new light. Particular instrumental colours and 
playing techniques became associated in my mind with certain songs: tinkling harmonics and bowed 
guitar in Eleanor Rigby, bluesy bottleneck-slide guitar in I Feel Fine, a café chanson Michelle with a 
mandolin chorus….Others: I Want to Hold Your Hand re-imagined in ¾ time as an Irish jig, an African-
inspired guitar duo in All you Need is Love, The Long and Winding Road pared down to its achingly 
beautiful essence… 

These ideas were captured on tape over the course of a year or so, some tracks coming quickly, almost 
as improvisations, some others painstakingly multi-tracked into "band" arrangements for up to eight 
instruments. Though it still sometimes felt like the idea of managing to record two CDs of material was 
indeed a joke, finally the project was completed.

The end result?--Somewhere between pop, classical, world music, blues and jazz, between "easy 
listening" and guitar-head virtuosity. Of course, there are hits and misses--though my ideas of which 
tracks are which may be different from yours--but hopefully these arrangements manage to cast 
new light on some of the most well-known and loved music of the twentieth century, capturing the 
infectious melodies and harmonies of these classic songs with the magical sound of the guitar.
Track Listing with Instrumentations--Listen to track excerpts in flashplayer above.
 DISC 1
Hello, Goodbye (two steel-string guitars) 			       
Can't Buy Me Love (two steel-string guitars) 		        
Here, There and Everywhere (solo classical guitar) 		      
All You Need Is Love (two steel-string guitars) 		     
Her Majesty (solo classical guitar) 			     	       
Help! (three mandolins, steel-string guitar) 		    
When I'm Sixty-Four (solo classical guitar) 		      
I Want To Hold Your Hand (mandolin, three steel-strings) 
Hey Jude (classical guitar, three steel-string guitars) 	         
I'll Follow the Sun (classical guitar, two steel-strings, 12-string)
I Feel Fine (solo steel-string guitar (bottleneck slide))
Eight Days a Week (three steel-string guitars, bass guitar)    
You Can't Do That (solo steel-string guitar) 		    
Come Together (four steel-strings, jazz guitar, bass guitar) 	   
If I Fell (solo classical guitar) 				       
Across the Universe (solo steel-string guitar) 		         
Day Tripper (five steel-string guitars)	 		      
In My Life (solo classical guitar) 				     
 DISC 2
Penny Lane (mandolin, classical guitar, 12-string, bass guitar) 
Yesterday (solo classical guitar) 
Paperback Writer (mandolin, steel-string, classical guitar)      
Ticket To Ride (solo 12-string guitar) 
A Hard Day's Night (two steel-string  guitars) 
Lady Madonna (solo steel-string guitar) 
Eleanor Rigby (four classical guitars, four steel-strings (1 bowed)) 
Blackbird (two classical guitars)
She Loves You (solo classical guitar) 
Love Me Do (mandolin, three steel-string  guitars) 
From Me To You (solo classical guitar) 
Let It Be (solo steel-string guitar) 
Yellow Submarine (two banjuleles, steel-string guitar)
Michelle (three mandolins, two classical guitars) 
Get Back (solo steel-string guitar)
Because  (solo classical guitar) 
Norwegian Wood (mandolin, four steel-strings, bass guitar)
The Long and Winding Road (classical guitar, steel-string guitar)      
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