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THE best lineup of Top Guitar Players Anywhere. Period.

Welcome to the Lord of the Strings website! 

2022 marks our 20th year of bringing you the best in acoustic music!

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

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He just doesn't need much more than two thumbs, eight fingers and six strings on a wooden box to carry his listeners away. The protege of Buster B. Jones, Brooks Robertson wowed guitar fans around the world even as a child. At age 14 he appeared on Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie Home Companion", where he won first place in a talent competition for 12-20 year olds. In 2010 he won 1st place in the country category and 2nd place overall in the "Yamaha Six String Theory Guitar Competition" in Los Angeles. In 2012 Brooks received the Horizon Award for young, up and coming guitarists by The National Thumbpickers Hall of Fame, and was recently voted Portland, Oregon's "Best Emerging Artist" by Deli Magazine. Still in his early 20s, Brooks continues perfecting his craft learning new tunes, styles and techniques, as well as composing his own groovy and soulful original music. Hailed by prominent exponents of his instrument like Nokie Edwards, Thom Bresh, John Jorgenson and Mason Williams, the young fingerstyle guitarist embodies the creative vision of a postmodern world: It's the music that counts. Brooks utilizes his superb technical abilities to play bass, rhythm and melody simultaneously and surpass the borders of conventional genres. He merges hauntingly beautiful compositions, country rhythms and jazzy harmonies with funky licks into his very own art form – sometimes delivered with a punch, sometimes with a smile. 

 

One show only

Mission Viejo Civic Center
Saturday - October 1st
​Doors: 6:30 pm 
Show: 7:00 pm.

Richard Smith

richard smith

Smith was born in Beckenham, England. He picked up the guitar when he was five years old after watching his father playing an Atkins and Travis version of "Down South Blues". He begged his father, a longtime Atkins admirer, to introduce him to the fingerpicking style. Smith soon became a child prodigy on the guitar. As a kid he could play the entire discographies of Django Reinhardt and Chet Atkins. At the age of 11 he shared the stage with his idol when Atkins invited Smith to play with him at Her Majesty's Theatre in London.  He was also influenced by guitarist Big Jim Sullivan and briefly studied jazz guitar with Shane Hill at Warlingham School, Surrey.

He formed the Richard Smith Guitar Trio with his brothers Rob and Sam before marrying American cellist Julie Adams and moving to Nashville, Tennessee in 1999.  He founded the Hot Club of Nashville, a jam band with a varying lineup that included John Jorgenson, Pat Bergeson, Bryan Sutton, and Stuart Duncan, combining gypsy jazz and western swing. Smith performs as a solo act and a duo with his wife. His repertoire includes country, bluegrass, blues, ragtime, folk, jazz, pop, and classical music.

Smith won the National Fingerstyle Guitar Championship at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas in 2001.  The National Thumbpickers Hall of Fame named him Thumbpicker of the Year in 2008 and 2021 and inducted him into the Hall of Fame in 2009.  He received the Golden Thumbpick Award by the Association of Fingerstyle Guitarists.

 

One show only

Mission Viejo Civic Center
Saturday - November 19th
​Doors: 6:30 pm
Show: 7:00 pm.

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THE BLACK MARKET TRUST

 The Black Market Trust are an American Traditional Pop/Vocal Jazz group from Los Angeles who combine the sounds of the legendary American crooners and vocal groups with the fire and energy of Gypsy Jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt. Consisting of five world class musicians who have traveled the globe recording and performing on the world’s biggest stages and with music’s most renowned artists, The Black Market Trust capitalize on their experience and pedigree to deliver a high energy, crowd pleasing performance filled with some of the best songs ever written.

           The live show features material from The Great American Songbook infused with Django’s romantic and virtuosic flavor.  Add some intricate vocal harmonies, a dash of Rat Pack-style comedy and it’s clear to audiences why The Black Market Trust have quickly earned a reputation as one of the premier live acts performing in music today. Be transported as they meld two distinctly different vibes- one of a gypsy campfire, the other a slick metropolitan nightclub- into a cohesive, stylish sound.

One show only

Mission Viejo Civic Center
Saturday - December 3rd
​Doors: 6:30 pm
Show: 7:00 pm.

Adam Rafferty

adam rafferty

Adam played jazz guitar for many years in NYC, and got to play with some jazz greats along the way like Mike Longo (pianist for Dizzy Gillespie and my mentor), Alvin Queen (Drums for Oscar Peterson & Horace Silver), Dr. Lonnie Smith (B3 organ with George Benson), Buster Williams, Bob Cranshaw, Tal Farlow….the list goes on!

In 2006 he got way deep into fingerstyle guitar after hearing the one and only Tommy Emmanuel.

Since then – life has changed. He has toured worldwide (Bangkok, USA, Germany, Italy, Austria, Scotland, Bermuda, Singapore, Malaysia, Czech Republic), released several fingerstyle instruction DVDS (teaching Stevie Wonder, Jackson Five and Jazz Guitar), and amassed over 10 million YouTube views.

One show only

Mission Viejo Civic Center
Saturday - February 11th
​Doors: 6:30 pm
Show: 7:00 pm.