Who is George Winston and how has he contributed to music?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

George Winston is a contemporary instrumentalist who delights audiences with his unassuming manner of appearing in a flannel shirt and blue jeans sans shoes so that his noisy tapping foot will not be heard. Inspired as a youth by the music by Vince Guaraldi that accompanied the Peanuts animations in the 1960's, Winston has recorded some of this music, as well as much of his own, especially in the Autumn, December, and Winter Into Spring albums. This music is characterized by Winston's "folk piano," a style he developed to complement "upbeat stride piano."In another 1960s experience, Winston's 2002 album, entitled Night Divides the Day - The Music of the Doors, is comprised of renditions of the Doors' music for piano. (When he first heard the Doors as a youth, Winston, then, learned to play the organ.) Winston also likes to play R&B piano, having been inspired by Fats Waller, Professor Longhair, Dr. John, and Jon Cleary.

A talented musician, Winston also plays the harmonica and the acoustic guitar. In order to recreate sounds similar to blues' guitarists, Winston sometimes reaches into the piano and mutes the strings. His own guitar playing is mainly Appalachian tunes and some slack-key guitar, a method of playing in which the tuning key is loosened and the strings are loose, forming a single chord. Furthermore, he supports Hawaiian slack-key guitarists by producing recordings on his own label.

laurto | Student

George Winston is an American musician who is best known for playing the piano, but also for the guitar, and harmonica. He is one of the best known performers playing contemporary instrumental music. He is also know for dressing unassumingly for his shows, by showing up in a flannel shirt and jeans. This shows that he cares more about the music than the show and appearance.