Scott SZERYK
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Scott SZERYK

London, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 1991 | SELF | AFM

London, Ontario, Canada | SELF | AFM
Established on Jan, 1991
Band Rock Fusion

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It is said London guitarist Scott Szeryk has T-shirts boasting his amps go all the way to “11.”

Wherever the volume level actually stops, it may mean the roof at Aeolian Hall will jiggle a little on Friday, when virtuoso Szeryk returns to the historic venue for an 8 p.m. show.

Szeryk brings his command of the instrument and knowledge gained at the Royal Conservatory of Music, L.A.’s Guitar Institute of Technology and his own Pro Guitar Instruction school in his hometown to the gig.

In 2013, Szeryk will be on the road touring the US and Canada as well as performing clinics for Music Man Guitars.

Robbie Antone’s Blues Machine is also on Friday’s double-London bill.

Tickets are $20 advance, $25 at the door of the 795 Dundas St. hall and $15 for students/seniors, plus applicable charges. - London Free Press


When Scott Szeryk was a young lad he, like many of his peers, picked up a guitar to help navigate his way through the awkward teen years. But while most fell in love with the rock star dream, Szeryk fell in love with the guitar.
After high school, Szeryk studied at Los Angeles’ famed Guitar Institute of Technology and then came back to London, hoping to earn some spare income by picking up a few music students.
As it turned out, he walked right into the guitar boom of the 90s. Almost 20 years later, he shakes his head at what happened next.
“All I ever wanted was to have 20 or 30 students to help me make a living under the umbrella of music,” he explains. He soon had 150 students a week and five employees.
The upside is that the money helped to build his studio, Guitarzan Productions, and hire some session musicians to start his recording career.
A few notable albums resulted. And while guitar instrumental music has a sizeable fan base, most of those fans don’t live in Southwestern Ontario. But Szeryk quickly realized that they do live on the internet, and those far-flung fans took to his music with passion.
And so at an age when some musicians are starting to put their biggest successes behind them, 42 year-old Szeryk is emerging as a “new artist” of sorts.
“What’s happened now with the internet and iTunes, you can get worldwide distribution and still own your stuff,” he says. “The model of the record company has changed.”
The next challenge is touring and marketing his music. He knows people like his sounds. Going where they live and getting them to come out and see him live is the goal of his forthcoming tour.
“I’m trying to book a tour for the central south [US],” he explains. “We’re all set and ready to go but the thing is that we have to give people a great reason to come out and see the show. That’s the big challenge.”
And while Szeryk would love to find some success on the concert circuit, he’s also well aware that other opportunities may be more lucrative. He’s currently trying to get his song “Celtic Rainbow” picked up by ESPN for Sportscentre updates.
He laughs, and then adds: “You don’t grow up saying ‘Hey I’d like to get my music on ESPN, but then you think of the exposure.’”


Bob Klanac
klanac.blogspot.com - The Beat Magazine


Teaching out of his seemingly ordinary, quaint home in South London, Scott Szeryk has not only shaped the face of the London guitar scene over the last 20 years, but has developed one of the largest guitar schools in South Western Ontario.

“At this point I have been playing guitar for 33 years […] I started back when I was 9 years of age playing classical guitar,” stated Szeryk, owner and establisher of London’s largest guitar school, Pro Guitar Instruction. “I started the school ‘Pro Guitar Instruction’ upon returning from Los Angeles in September of 1990. One of my chief aims under the subsidiary of Guitarzan Productions was to start a music school. The most students we have seen in one week has been 147. I guess over the years the number of different students I have taught has been in the thousands.”

Szeryk’s latest album entitled Guitar Manifesto, released last month, is his favorite project to date. “I’m really proud of this one all the way around. From song writing to production and engineering, everything turned out great.”

To craft the new album, Szeryk pulled from every spectrum of the guitar world. Szeryk describes Guitar Manifesto as “an instrumental guitar album that features a robust myriad of songs from Rockabilly to Blues, Funk, Jazz Fusion and Rock.”

“Every time I have a Guitar in my hand I’m inspired so really it’s a matter of nurturing all the creative ideas as they come to you,” Szeryk adds.

Szeryk is very well-known in London’s music scene for his influence on local guitarists. A graduate of the Guitar Institute of Technology in Los Angeles, Scott has performed with various rock bands, including Junk Culture and Black Ice, and has played in over 1000 live performances. For the past 15 years, however, Szeryk has focused on his solo projects.

In a Scene Magazine article Gavin Brix describes Szeryk as possessing “monstrous playing techniques couple with speed and dynamics that will leave most axe shredders in disarray.” He was also distinguished in Guitar Player Magazine in 1992 in an article dedicated to his album Shades of Freedom.

For Szeryk, Pro Guitar Instruction and Guitarzan Productions are both about constantly learning, maturing as a musician, and dedicating oneself to self-improvement. “The next step for me is touring Guitar Manifesto around the world. I would also like to work with other artists in engineering and production of their music.”

Guitar Manifesto is currently retailing through http://www.szeryk.com.


Craig Pawson - Grapevine Magazine


London electric guitar virtuoso Scott Szeryk is in concert at Aeolian Hall Friday for the first-ever performance of his instrumental CD.

Szeryk's Guitar Manifesto - an eclectic mix of styles and genres including blues, rockabilly, funk, jazz fusion and rock - has received raves for its energy and technical excellence.

But Szeryk's first love is rock, of the classic style, and he hasn't forgotten how to sing.

"My thinking for making the CD is that I've always been a fan of instrumental albums - John Coltrane, Jeff Beck and many others - and I just went through this phase of writing instrumentals," Szeryk said.

"It's natural thing for me because instead of thinking about a vocal melody, I had to think guitar melody. But there still has to be a hook.":

Szeryk is well known in London as a music teacher, founder of Pro Guitar Instruction school that has about 150 students, but also a guitar player's guitar player.

The CD was released in January, but Szeryk is only now getting around to promoting it.

"Guitar Manifesto is the album that I've been painstakingly and relentlessly working on for a long time; it is a personal manifesto about what music means to me in relation to where I'm at in my life," Szeryk said.

Szeryk's musical influences are many, ranging from Beethoven to jazz great Coltrane to rock's Frank Zappa, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix and Beck.

Born in Connecticut, Szeryk moved to London with his family when he was about five years old. In 1989, Szeryk studied at the world renown Guitar Institute of Technology in Los Angeles, then returned to London to open the guitar school.

He also may be familiar for playing the national anthems at major sporting venues, including the Rogers Center for the Toronto Blue Jays, the John Labatt Center for the London Knights and the Air Canada Center for the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Rock.

This is Szeryk's second instrumental album, the first released in 1992, Shades of Freedom, led to a feature story in the October 1992 issue of Guitar Player magazine.

But the new CD is already drawing reviews from some serious critics, such as a writer from The New York Times.

"Guitar Manifesto features a myriad of robust compositional styles, interesting arrangements, captivating hooks and melodies with state-of-the-art guitar playing that will please the most discerning of guitar aficionados." wrote Lorne Manley on Szeryk's website, www.szeryk.com.

For a taste of Szeryk's offerings on Guitar Manifesto visit the website www.myspace.com/szeryk and give a listen to the first song, Bringing the Heat, River Dog Blues or Venus Rain, a soulful ballad that catches you by surprise.

Szeryk will be performing at the Aeolian with drummer Troy Feener, Brent Jones on keyboards and Paul Loeffelholz Szeryk said he's planning a mini-tour in the fall, followed by a tour of the southern U.S. next January, although details are still being worked out.

"I'm at a stage in my life where I want to start getting back into the touring, the U.S., Europe . . . the international scene."

E-mail joe.belanger@sunmedia.ca, or follow JoeBatLFPress on Twitter. - London Free Press


Guitar geeks will find much to love with Canadian Guitar wizard Scott Szeryk's latest CD. The albums 11 original, instrumental compositions cover a broad range of styles, but all act as showcases for Szeryk's fiery finger work and flashy technique. The album's opening tracks "Bringing the Heat" and "Celtic Rainbow", signal that Szeryk and his sideman are ready to rock with no holds barred. Szeryk's guitar screams and wails, while Drummer Marc Atkinson provides the guitarist with a thundering backup. Other highlights include the jazzy "TransFusion", Szeryk's wonderful countrified picking' on "Rockabilly Rampage" and the hunk of funk on the aptly named "Black Squirrel Funk".

John Sharpe
Editor at Scene magazine - Scene Magazine


“Guitar Manifesto features a myriad of robust compositional styles, interesting arrangements, captivating hooks and melodies with state of the art guitar playing that will please the most discerning of guitar aficionados.”

Lorne Manly - New York Times


Well known to the London music scene in his dual guitar roles as guitar-slinger for hire and guitar instructor with his own school for that purpose, Scott Szeryk's new CD may be his calling card to bigger and better things. Chock-full of six-sting gymnastics in a classic power trio setting, SZERYK will be a little slice of shreddin' heaven for local aficionados of the wammy bar hammer on/off way of life. A heavy Van Halen influence is evident in most of these tunes, from the Edward Van H. finger work to Szeryk's Roth-esque vocals and the tight snare four on the floor drum sound. This is a strong piece of work on a world class level.

Rod Nicholson Scene Magazine Aug 2 2007 - Scene Magazine (Aug 2 2007)


With his strong melodic sense and facility with modern techniques, Scott seems ready to find his place in a young recording group. His demo leans toward progressive instrumental rock, with solos emphasizing legato phrases, arpeggios, quick runs, complex harmonized lines, moody wammy bar work and creative octave usage.
A guitarist since the age of 10, Scott decided to make music his career after hearing Van Halen's first LP. In his teens he was obsessed with the instrument, spending up to four hours a day dissecting music by Van Halen, Hendrix, and Rush. He networked with drummers and bassists and had his own band by age 15. After performing at dances and assemblies, he put aside his electric axe to focus on acoustic. He learned classical theory and technique, and his classical playing brought him two awards in the London Kiwanis Music Festival.
While Attending GIT, Scott enjoyed playing with musicians like Scott Henderson and Craig Turner. After returning home, he quickly built up his teaching clientele to an average of 25 students per week. Working with the group Junk Culture has allowed him to gain valuable recording and stage experience. In the future he hopes to work as a studio musician, join a rock group, and record a solo album of his own compositions.

Mike Varney, Spotlight column, Oct 1992 Guitar Player Magazine - GUITAR PLAYER MAGAZINE


Discography

Guitar Manifesto-Scott Szeryk (website, iTunes)
SZERYK-Scott Szeryk (website, iTunes)
Shades of Freedom-Scott Szeryk

Photos

Bio

With a music career spanning nearly two decades, Scott Szeryk is one of today's most innovative and dynamic guitar players, known for his technical mastery of the guitar with solos that cut right through to the core of the listener. Szeryk is also the leader of the rock powerhouse, SZERYK. Scott Szeryk’s highly anticipated new album, Guitar Manifesto, was released worldwide on January 18, 2012.

Born in Bridgeport, Connecticut, Szeryk first picked up a guitar at the age of nine. His guitar virtuosity was evident from an early age: he was studying classical guitar before the age of ten and by sixteen, he was already playing professionally with the band Black Ice. In 1989, he moved to Los Angeles to further his studies at the world-renowned Guitar Institute of Technology. After graduation, he started his own Music School “Pro Guitar Instruction” which has since become a well regarded and thriving guitar teaching institution, with 150 students passing through its doors each week. In 1992 he released his first instrumental guitar album “Shades of Freedom” which landed him a feature in Mike Varney’s spotlight column of the Oct. 1992 issue of Guitar Player Magazine. In 2007, SZERYK released his first solo album under his own label Guitarzan Productions. In 2007, Szeryk began playing the National Anthems at major sporting venues such as the Rogers Center (Toronto Blue Jays), the John Labatt Center (OHL hockey) and the Air Canada Center (Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Rock), with audiences between 10 000 to over 40 000.

In many ways, Guitar Manifesto is the quintessential Szeryk album, featuring an eclectic range of musical styles including blues, rockabilly, funk, jazz fusion and rock. The versatility that is so strongly showcased on Guitar Manifesto reflects Szeryk's career as a musician known for his versatility and all embracing mix of musical combinations. “My strength is versatility - from country, blues, R&B, Rock, metal, classical, jazz -and also stems from my experience as a music producer, engineer, studio session player, and even hired gun for live performances," says Szeryk., whose diverse range of influences include Beethoven, John Coltrane, Frank Zappa, Scott Henderson, Frank Gambale, Alan Holdsworth, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix and Jeff Beck. Guitar Manifesto not only features Szeryk's trademark technical ability but also shows another side of Szeryk as a musician, with the emphasis of this album being on song writing and musical arrangement, with catchy hooks and strong melodies that are sure to appeal to any listener. “Guitar Manifesto is the album that I've been painstakingly and relentlessly working on for a long time; it is a personal manifesto about what music means to me in relation to where I'm at in my life,” Szeryk says.

When listening to Szeryk's playing, whether a recording or a live performance, it is obvious that it is a pure unadulterated love for the guitar that drives this uber talented musician. Szeryk says that his love of the guitar is something that is constantly expanding, just as his musical sound is ever-evolving. “My obsessive passion for the guitar is something that grows more and more each day.” It is this incredible passion that has propelled his unparalleled work ethic throughout his career. Despite all of his musical success and many endeavours, this multi-talented musician still practices guitar for sometimes as long as 10 to 12 hours a day. "I take pride in my tremendous work ethic. I am constantly expanding as a guitarist, musician and as a person," says Szeryk. This passionate devotion to his instrument is also obvious in his studio teaching students, with Scott being well known as an instructor who brings the same enthusiasm and energy to his teaching that he does to the stage. "Somewhere out there someone is practising and when you meet that person in head-to-head competition they will win," is a quote of Szeryk's that has inspired countless students over the years.

With The Guitar Manifesto, Szeryk is looking forward to touring the world and sharing his passion for music. "Music speaks to my spirit," says Szeryk. "When I am performing live, I am making a connection with my soul. I share this infinite energy with my audience, as I become one with my guitar."



Band Members