“The guitar is my voice,” says Bryan James Gatten, a guitarist and composer based in Duluth, MN. Playing since the age of six, for more than two decades now Gatten has been continually pushing himself on the instrument. Gatten has released numerous albums and EPs, among them “The Blue Hour” (2017), an album of original songs which he describes as “a love letter to Duluth and the surrounding area in Minnesota,” and “Zenith City Christmas” (2020), a collection of four holiday carols and one original that show versatility and originality in arrangements, even with well known melodies. A rocker at heart, he is also trained in classical and jazz guitar, and can be seen playing a variety of shows around Minnesota in these various genres. Gatten is currently getting ready to release his latest album, titled “Contact Imminent,” a rocking collection of ten new original songs that rank among his best work yet.
“Imagine Rush if they dispensed with the vocals and added Jeff Beck.” – Richard Thomas, Duluth Reader.
Gatten performs often as a solo guitarist, employing his trusty Stratocaster and a looping pedal, taking the full band arrangements from his albums and giving them a different life as a solo piece, often adding in elements of improvisation to allow the music to be unique for every performance and situation. While original music and improvisation is heavily featured in every show, Gatten also showcases select crowd-pleasing covers from artists such as Prince, The Who, The Police and more. He also plays in various bands, including a power trio of guitar, bass and drums listed as the “Bryan James Gatten Band,” as well as other rock and jazz projects in the Duluth area.
“Bryan James Gatten started to play, setting up some looped rhythms and, fingers flying on extended, virtuousic jams, getting everyone’s attention. Audience members moved closer as he tore through instrumental originals and covers… the now enthusiastic audience hollered for an encore.” – Christine Dean, KUMD 103.3FM
Listen to “Chasing Sunsets,” from the upcoming album Contact Imminent (2021):
Listen to “Contact Imminent,” from the upcoming album of the same name:
Watch Bryan perform a solo set from a virtual livestream in 2020: https://www.facebook.com/bjgband/videos/393788688497013/