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Leo Kottke

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June 9, 1989 | KATHRYN BAKER, Associated Press
Would anyone but Leo Kottke walk across a parking lot with a 6-year-old child and suddenly be moved to broach the subject of the birds and the bees? Pausing to lean on a car bumper, Kottke said to his son: "Joe, don't you ever wonder where you came from? How all these people got here? Where I came from?" His son wondered wearily, "Dad, is this going to be another one of your jokes?" It's often hard to tell whether Kottke is about to produce, after tortured rambling, some great truth--or just another of his jokes.
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ENTERTAINMENT
August 22, 1998 | JOHN ROOS, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
It's easy to think of Leo Kottke as the consummate solo troubadour. For nearly 30 years, the inventive guitarist has captivated audiences with the lightest of baggage. Armed only with a guitar and employing his droll sense of humor, a finger-picked style and the occasional vocal, he's a one-man show. Or is he? Despite outward signs to the contrary, Kottke is no solitary man. The folk-based musician gains inspiration from his shared vision with others.
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NEWS
February 17, 1994 | RANDY LEWIS
Leo Kottke is one of those rare artists whose latest album never differs radically from its predecessor, yet he never seems to be caught in a rut. Oh, one time he might release an album full of instrumentals showcasing his wizardry on six- and 12-string guitars; another time, as with 1991's "Great Big Boy," devote the collection to his signature craggy vocals. But each time out, there's no mistaking who is at work.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 20, 1998 | JOSEF WOODARD, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
About 30 years ago, a Minnesotan trombonist-turned-acoustic-guitar-player named Leo Kottke released an album on the tiny Takoma label. Suddenly Kottke found himself with a full-blown career as a finger-picking guitarist. He scratched his head, muttered something witty to his muse and proceeded to play for a living.
NEWS
May 16, 1991 | MIKE BOEHM, Mike Boehm covers pop music for The Times Orange County Edition.
The world probably has more than enough guitar heroes. The refreshing thing about Leo Kottke is that he likes to play the part of a guitar anti-hero. On stage, Kottke doesn't try to come off as a demigod whose fret-burning, finger-blurring exploits should command an audience's homage. The gruff-voiced Minnesotan is more likely to play the part of a bemused, somewhat befuddled, self-deprecating humorist.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 21, 1991 | JOHN D'AGOSTINO, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
"H eenh-heenh-heenh-heenh-heeeeennnh. . . ." It's not often that a musician answers a serious question about the title of his next album with a fiendish, insect-like laugh. Then again, Leo Kottke probably is the only guitar virtuoso who would name an album "Renfield's Laugh," after the hunchback in Bram Stoker's "Dracula."
ENTERTAINMENT
August 22, 1998 | JOHN ROOS, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
It's easy to think of Leo Kottke as the consummate solo troubadour. For nearly 30 years, the inventive guitarist has captivated audiences with the lightest of baggage. Armed only with a guitar and employing his droll sense of humor, a finger-picked style and the occasional vocal, he's a one-man show. Or is he? Despite outward signs to the contrary, Kottke is no solitary man. The folk-based musician gains inspiration from his shared vision with others.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 24, 1991 | MIKE BOEHM, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Leo Kottke is probably one of the small minority of Americans who could function reasonably well if suddenly transported back in time 100 years. Before wireless, folks sat around on their porches, fanning themselves and telling stories. At night, they'd gather in the parlor, listening to somebody play a musical instrument. At the Coach House on Wednesday, Kottke displayed prodigious gifts for gabbing and playing.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 31, 1990 | JIM WASHBURN
Let others have the riches and fame. Leo Kottke is content with the respect of his peers and the somewhat more arcane satisfactions that have resulted from the guitarist's 20-year career as an American original. "I've won those guitar readers poll things, and those are all nice," Kottke, who plays the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano tonight, said last week by phone from his home near Minneapolis.
NEWS
June 17, 1993 | JOSEF WOODARD, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Acoustic guitarists--as a viable, commercial, self-sustaining concept--came in out of their private wilderness long ago. They came, freely mashing together instrumental folk, bluegrass and whatever other spices caught their fancy, and sizable hordes of listeners soaked it up.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 7, 1994 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Leo Kottke, long treasured for his prodigious guitar skills, has another talent that's every bit as great. And that equally impressive craft--getting to the heart of a song and cradling it front of an audience--was at the center of his Coach House performance Wednesday. Alternating between six- and 12-string guitars, Kottke played a typically eclectic set, sprinkled with his trademark wry, between-song patter.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 5, 1994 | BUDDY SEIGAL, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
What to make of Leo Kottke? Known for his virtuoso, idiosyncratic guitar artistry, his dry, black-humored lyrics, and a voice that he himself describes as like "geese (breaking wind) on a muggy day," he hardly is the type one would figure to enjoy a long, successful career. Yet for 25 years now, Kottke--who plays tonight at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano--has endured, with nary a break in his album release or concert schedule.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 5, 1994 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
The view from the lofty heights of the "Guitar Summit," the touring program that includes jazzman Joe Pass, classical guitarist Pepe Romero and flamenco wizard Paco Pena, has been especially revealing for the fourth member, Leo Kottke. They travel, usually at night, from venue to venue on a tour bus, and as Kottke explained Thursday by phone from a stop in San Diego, "I'll mooch a cigar from Pepe or Paco, and we'll get into it.
NEWS
February 17, 1994 | RANDY LEWIS
Leo Kottke is one of those rare artists whose latest album never differs radically from its predecessor, yet he never seems to be caught in a rut. Oh, one time he might release an album full of instrumentals showcasing his wizardry on six- and 12-string guitars; another time, as with 1991's "Great Big Boy," devote the collection to his signature craggy vocals. But each time out, there's no mistaking who is at work.
NEWS
June 17, 1993 | JOSEF WOODARD, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Acoustic guitarists--as a viable, commercial, self-sustaining concept--came in out of their private wilderness long ago. They came, freely mashing together instrumental folk, bluegrass and whatever other spices caught their fancy, and sizable hordes of listeners soaked it up.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 5, 1992 | JIM WASHBURN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
If you really want to get Leo Kottke's goat sometime, you can do it with a dog. Here's how: Find where Kottke's staying, check into an adjacent room with a feisty pooch for an accomplice, set him to yapping at a good time--4 a.m. might work--and start shouting 'Pepe, hush!' " Most working musicians probably wouldn't appreciate this gesture, but in Kottke's case it might just send him around the bend, or at least make him write a sequel. There are precedents here, see.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 10, 1988 | THOMAS K. ARNOLD
Also in town tonight is dexterous acoustic guitarist Leo Kottke, appearing at Mandeville Auditorium on the UC San Diego campus. According to the Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll, "Leo Kottke's propulsive finger-picked guitar instrumentals and (to a lesser extent) his gallows-humor lyrics have garnered him a solid cult following."
ENTERTAINMENT
June 5, 1992 | JIM WASHBURN
Leo Kottke has spent most of his musical career as a loner. But in recent years he's opened the door a crack to working with other songwriters, from Little Feat keyboardist Bill Payne to opera composer Stephen Paulus. He's discovered that having that second perspective "for me is exactly like bringing a couple more klieg lights to let you see this territory, this musical place a little better."
ENTERTAINMENT
June 5, 1992 | JIM WASHBURN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
If you really want to get Leo Kottke's goat sometime, you can do it with a dog. Here's how: Find where Kottke's staying, check into an adjacent room with a feisty pooch for an accomplice, set him to yapping at a good time--4 a.m. might work--and start shouting 'Pepe, hush!' " Most working musicians probably wouldn't appreciate this gesture, but in Kottke's case it might just send him around the bend, or at least make him write a sequel. There are precedents here, see.
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