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John Stropes

Lecturer, Finger-Style Guitar

jstropes@uwm.eduKenilworth Square East 587


Music & Cultures, Tunghai University, Taichung, Taiwan
BS, Political Science, UW-Milwaukee


John Stropes is a leading authority on finger-style guitar. Through the historical research, analysis, transcription, teaching and performance of finger-style guitar, he has brought focus to this style as a significant American music. His publishing company, Stropes Editions, Ltd., has set a new standard for written music for the guitar and guitar education. Stropes was president of the Milwaukee Classical Guitar Society, 1985-1996 and artistic director of the American Finger-Style Guitar Festivals, 1985, 1987 and 1989, which were funded in part by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. He performed and taught at the First Chinese Guitar Artistic Festival in the People's Republic of China in 1986 and returned to China in 1988 and 1990 to perform and teach with a performance at Beijing's Symphony Hall broadcast on Chinese television. He was advisor to the Beijing Guitar Research Association. chair of the Guitar Department, Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, 1984-1994, author of Michael Hedges/Rhythm, Sonority, Silence; Leo Kottke/Eight Songs; 20th Century Masters of Finger-Style Guitar and John Fahey's Guitar Christmas Book. Stropes is author of numerous transcriptions of contemporary works for finger-style guitar and related instructional materials and a frequent contributor to guitar publications.