Wizz Jones

Dazzling Stranger

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This British Isles folk guitarist worked in obscurity throughout the '60s and '70s, with numerous obscure LPs released on the continent throughout the years, existing only as high-priced collector's items. A British folk revival troubadour, Jones' admirers include Incredible String Band, Roy Harper, and Burt Jansch, and the singer/songwriter is an equal caliber champion of the movement despite his considerable obscurity. Like Jansch, on this recording he favored the DADGAG system, an Eastern-influenced tuning method that made the acoustic guitars of John Renbourn, Davey Graham, and Jansch take on another melodic life that would influence the folk music scene considerably, as well as spilling down into the work of Nick Drake and Jimmy Page. Dazzling Stranger was released by Massachusetts independent Scenescof in 1996, and is a startling display of songsmanship that takes in Wizz Jones' favored traditional songs, as well as tunes by Ralph McTell and John Renbourn -- both evidently admirers of the artist, so the tributes are mutual. Sounding strikingly akin to the work of Burt Jansch, this album is produced in the same intimacy as the great British folk revival artists: a no frills live documentation of man-with-guitar performance that is absolutely stunning.