Online Store Guitar Workshops News Discography About Alex de Grassi Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find Alex's older recordings like Turning: Turning Back, Slow Circle, etc.?

Unfortunately, many of those recordings have gone out of print in recent years. Some of them are still available in stores, some can be purchased directly from this site, and others are no longer available. (Although we hear reports that some people have been able to find copies on e-bay).

Why don't you have sample recordings of your music that visitors can listen to?

You can find a full-length MP3 sample of 'When Johnny Comes Marching Home' on the Discography page. You can also currently find lots of my music on iTunes ready to download.

Will your new recording "Now and Then: Folk Songs for the 21st Century be all solo acoustic guitar?

Yes - except for two guest appearances from Michael Manring playing bass on Oh Susanna and Joe Craven on percussion on Hushabye and Oh Susanna.

Hi, I bought the new CD, "Now and Then", last night. I've really been enjoying it! One thing that would have been interesting would have been a list of tunings used for each track. Can you tell me what tunings were used for each track of "Now and Then"? Thanks!

Tunings for "Now and Then" CGDGAD--"Single Girl", "Streets of Laredo" EbGDGBbD--"Saint James Infirmary", "Shortnin' Bread", "When Johnny Comes Marchin Home" EADGBE--"Swing Low", "Sweet William", "Hushabye", "Oh Susanna" DADGBE--"Bury Me Not" DADGAD--"Lay This Body Down"

When are you going to release a DVD of one of your performances?

The new DVD "The Six String Workshop" is complete and available from our online store page here on You'll find samples you can view online as well.

I'm sure you are asked this question all the time but why is there no movement to get your older work re-released? Can Tropo maybe lease the rights or something along the lines. I have been trying to find "slow circle" "turning: turning back" and "clockwork" but they are runing for upwards of $80 and although they are worth every dollar they are taking advantage of the real fan. Can you please speak out for the little guy/big fan?

Jerry, a lot of people want those older cds. we've approached BMG about it, but they won't license them back. But, we'll keep trying. alex

I have all of your older recordings except Slow Circle and Clockwork, and I have been listening to them for 15 years and have yet to tire of them. They are remarkable. I have looked everywhere on the Internet for these other two recordings, and can't find them anywhere. Could you make them available on iTunes as mp3 files? I would love to have them, but since they are out of print I don't think anyone is willing to part with their used copies. Or do you know any sources that still have the original CD?

steve--those are out of print and owned by Windham Hill/BMG. I can't legally make them available. we've tried unsuccessfully to license them back. So, i might re-record them, but I can't make them available as a digital download--sorry. Perhaps they will become available as individual pieces as downloads from Windham Hill. all the best! alex

I have searched all over the place for the CD you made..... Interpretation Of James Taylor. I've had no luck with this Cd. Please help me please find this one.

The Interpretations of James Taylor cd was originally released by NorthSound/NorthWord Records. It was a special work for hire project, and we never sold it ourselves nor made an effort to promote it. It is now out of print and the company is out of business. We have heard of people finding these cds on e-bay, but we do not have any available and don't know where else you could look. good luck! alex

Hello, Alex I've been a fan since "Southern Exposure"! Are there any Tabs out there for your music? Also, what is the tuning for "The Holly and the Ivy"? It's lovely... Merry Christmas!

hey bob, there's a complete list of what's available from my tab on the buy page of my website. the holly and the ivy is in DADEAD and is available in the book Portraits of Christmas from Mel Bay/John August. i have a new book coming out mid 2006 with some of the older material, and we may reissue the first book as well. also, watch for more individual pieces of new stuff to be available on my site. all the best! alex

Given that your latest collection of transcriptions is in production, can you share which pieces will be included? Also, have you given any thought to doing your summer workshops again?

hi steve, my new book of transcriptions is called Best of Alex de Grassi. it's available from our store now: blood & jasmine blue trout bright sky cumulus deep at night klamath short order sleeping lady turning: turning back cheers, alex

Where can I find the Northsound recordings of Alex playing James Taylor and Simon & Garfunkel?

These recordings were released to the specialty market by the Northword/Northsound company. The company is no longer operating, and we don't know where you can find those CDs, but we've heard that there are some sitting in a warehouse somewhere.

Playing The Guitar
Hi Alex, I was wondering if there were any transcriptions of any of the songs on "Bolivian Blues Bar" for purchase anywhere, and what tunings you used for the tunes, if not standard.

Sorry, there are no transcriptions for these songs, but they are all in standard tuning.


Yes, you can get the tape in PAL format. Ordering information is available at but you may also order the NTSC version from our online store here on

Alex - how do you keep your nails from getting chewed up by your strings? Seems like mine get little grooves worn in them after an hour or so of hard playing.

I use acrylic nails. I go to the manicurist every three weeks. She mixes a powder and a liquid and brushes the paste over my natural nail. It hardens in about a minute and then you can shape with a file. You need to experiment with length and thickness, but I find that not too long and not to thick works best.

Are there any available transcriptions of Turning Turning Back? If not, do you plan on posting that particular song on your website any time soon?

hey john, the piece turning is in my book Alex de Grassi Guitar Collection published by Hal Leonard in 1991, but now out of print, there's a chance it will be reissued next year. the turning back section has not been transcribed except for a 16 bar excerpt that was printed in a magazine some years ago. if you send us a sel-addressed stamped envelope, we will send that excerpt to you all the best! alex de grassi po box 772 redwood valley ca 95470

Can you tell me how soon your next book of transcriptions will be out, and what compositions will be in it?

hi robin, i'm acutally working on a new book now, perhaps more than one, and hope to have them out the first half of next year (2006). all the best! alex

Hi Alex: I'm a big fan of your music. I just bought "Six String Workshop" and I'm in awe of your arrangements . Your originality never ceases to amaze me. You mentioned in the Q&A section that a book of transcriptions was forthcoming in the early part of 2006. Is this still the case?

hi daniel, thanks for the e-mail. i will have a new book of guitar transcriptions published by Hal Leonard Publishing out Fall 2006. The book will include previously unpublished pieces from recordings spanning 1978-1993. we will post more specific information on the website when it becomes available. we will also notfiy are mailing list. all the best! alex

Hello, I'm trying to figure out "Deep at Night" --could you please tell me the tuning for this song. Thanks, Justin D. Fournet

hey justin, deep at night is in EbGDGBbD tuning. it has also been transcribed and will be available in a Hal Leonard book of 9 pieces due out later this year (06). the book includes: deep at night blood & jasmine sleeping lady turning: turning back blue trout short order cumulus klamath bright sky all the best! alex

Where can I find the tunings for Alex's guitar compositions and arrangements?

Author and publisher John Stropes has a list of tunings for nearly all of Alex's pieces on his website He also posts tunings used by other guitarists as well.

Where can I find sheet music/tab for Alex's music?

All of the available sheet music/tab for my music, and where you can find it, is listed on the sheet music page of this website.

What type of guitars does Alex play?

I use various guitars. Currently my primary touring/recording guitars are a custom Lowden F35c maple with a European spruce top and a custom Traugott R model Brazilian Rosewood with German Spruce top. Other favorites are a custom Carlson sympitar (twelve sympathetic strings) maple with spruce top and a custom McCollum baritone (28" scale) paduk with Italian spruce top.

Hi Alex I'd like to know a little more about Carlson sympitar concept from you, i.e. are those sympathetic strings commons guitar set? Which kind of tuning did you experiment? More over: does that kind of guitar allows a live recording via mic. with no need adding rev.FX? I mean if the natural sympathetic sounds enough from your own point of wiew? Thanks Antonio

antonio, in addition to the normal six strings, the sympitar has 12 sympathetic strings (two course of six each) that attach to the bridge and pass under the top and beneath the fingerboard through two graphite channels. each course is about a half inch wide. the channels also function like a fixed truss rod that strengthens the neck. the sympathetic strings emerge through two little slots in the peghead onto a pair of graphite nuts just beyond the nut for the main strings. the guages of the sympathetic strings range from .006-.008 and they are tuned from the open third string (g) up to the G played on the first string at the third fret. i use different tunings for the sympathetic, but i generally tune the to a mode and not chromatically, and double or sometimes even triple up on some of the key pitches. i normally record the guitar with just two mics. the mix of sympahtetic and normal strings is naturally quite good, although mic placement can enhance one or the other. i have pickups for each set of strings, but am not using them much these days. all the best! alex

What pickups and outboard gear does Alex use?

Alex generally uses a AKG 460 cardioid condenser microphone in concert. Occasionaly he uses a pickup with a Raven Lab preamp.

Hi Alex, I'm a big fan on the East Coast that finally got to see you in person - it was great! At the show you played your arrangement of Jimi Hendrix's "Angel" and explained that it was part of a project to get young people interested in playing the guitar. Any chance of tableture publication of the piece? Also, was it recorded on a collaboration CD of some kind? -Thanks!

sheila, my arrangement of Angel has not been transcribed, but the recording is on a double cd called Guitar Harvest, Volume 1 on the Solid Air label. It was produced by the New York Guitar Festival.

Alex, Is there a transcription of Sleeping Lady that I can buy. David Adele

hi david, that transcription is now available in my new book "The Best Of Alex de Grassi" which you can buy in our store here on the site... enjoy. alex

Any idea as to when your next songbook might be available? Can we pre-order? I'm really looking forward to learning Blood & Jasmine and Swordfish. Really hope those two are in there. Thanks!

hi robin, my new book of guitar pieces should be available by next summer from Hal Leonard. It will definitely include Blood & Jasmine-maybe Swordfish as well. We'll post info on the site about pre-ordering the book when we have that information. all the best! alex