What do you get when you cross a Welsh university graduate with music influenced by the soft tones of Spain? Why, Dewi Griffiths of course. The Cardiff-born fingerstyle player brings an undoubted wealth of talent to the table, fuelled by his passion for the acoustic field.
Being a part of the Welsh Proms has clearly overwhelmed Dewi, or perhaps it’s the St. David’s venue, as his lone figure saunters onto a stage bearing four chairs, before he reassures the gathered audience that the chairs are acting as makeshift guitar stands in place of the ones he left at home.
Employing his guitar in unconventional styles, Dewi launches straight into songs from his debut album and a hush overcomes the crowd. Covers of Andy McKee’s ‘Drifting’ and Bob Marley’s ‘No Woman, No Cry’ interlude his own material, as well as the odd anecdote about his busking days to keep the evening humour-filled.
Flanking the upbeat and rhythmic ‘Zombie Pirates’ are the beautiful ‘Gw Di Hw’ and reworked ‘Pagliacci’, and the intricate and versatile structure of each song give just a sliver of an insight into the mind of the writer. The crossed-hand fingerpicking and knocking on the guitar body are a pure delight to watch, especially with such speed and precision on show.
Dewi Griffiths certainly shows no nerves on stage: what some might see as unprofessionalism, others may see as being at ease in the workplace. It’s not so much like watching a musician, but an artist in his element, crafting a masterpiece. He’s still a tad rough around the edges, but the Spanish sun is only just rising on the young man’s calling.
Words: Ben Barker