Hailed by NBC News for making “…the guitar sing like it was invented only to be in his hands,” native Oregonian Tye Austin (age 32) is the most important guitarist, vocalist, and composer to come out of the Beaver State. Since he began formal guitar studies in 2008, he has performed solo all over the world from NYC’s Carnegie Hall to London’s Royal Albert Hall, Andalusian cave theatres, and many other prestigious venues. In October, 2017, Tye was invited to perform for more than 300 world leaders at the United Nations Headquarters in Manhattan, NY. The same year, he was asked to compose and perform French renaissance music for guitar and string quartet at the US French Embassy during the premiere party for the Netflix original series, Versailles. One year later in 2018, Tye was invited to perform for the former Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, on the 73rd floor of the Trump World Tower, located on the UN Plaza. He has been interviewed by NBC News, National Public Radio, The Boston Guardian, and Psychology Today. He was invited to be featured as one of the world’s top 10 guitarists and composers in Classical Guitar Magazine 2019. He has won first prize in a series of musical competitions including NYC’s American Protege International 2013 and London’s Grand Prize Virtuoso International 2016.
In addition to his solo guitar work, he frequently collaborates with the New York Virtuosi String Orchestra and a variety of latin jazz ensembles. Tye performs a wide range of musical genres from classical to flamenco, bossa nova, jazz, modern pop, original compositions, and many more. He also sings in English, Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese, and Native American dialects while accompanying himself on the guitar. As a prodigious composer with more than 100 original works and several commissions to his name, he is dedicated to expanding the classical guitar repertoire. His chamber works for guitar and string quartet have been performed by various professional ensembles around the world. As a prolific singer/songwriter, he writes about love, nature, philosophy, and the human condition.
Tye bought his first guitar at a pawn shop after attending a Spanish guitar concert for the first time in 2007. “I will never forget that magical night. I witnessed one guitar being played like four guitars simultaneously. An epiphany washed over me and suddenly I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I had found my passion, purpose, and best friend,” says Tye. Unaware of his Spanish ancestry at the time, he subsequently learned his thrice great-grand uncle, Jean Lafitte, was a native Spaniard and Sephardic Jew, flamenco guitar aficionado, and the most famous Pirate of the Caribbean in history.
Within six months of formal guitar lessons, Tye was accepted as a full-time music major at the Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University (OCASOU) in the autumn of 2008. He graduated summa cum laude with his Bachelor of Arts Degree in classical guitar performance and music composition. In 2014, Tye received a scholarship to pursue his Master of Music Degree in classical guitar performance at the New England Conservatory (NEC) in Boston, MA, where he graduated with the highest of honors in 2016. While at NEC, he studied with the world-renowned maestro, Eliot Fisk (Andres Segovia’s last direct pupil). Tye furthered his classical guitar studies with Grammy-winner, Sharon Isbin, chair of the guitar department at The Juilliard School in NYC. He also studied flamenco guitar performance for a summer with David Martinez, chair of guitar department at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Granada, Spain.
His debut studio album, Andalusia: Spanish Guitar Music, was released in December, 2017 as an homage to his solo journey across Spain in the summer of 2015. His sophomore album, Syncopado Americano, will feature obscure Latin guitar music and is set to be released in the summer of 2022, after he travels through Latin America. In his spare time, Tye enjoys photography, reading/writing, traveling, surfing, snowboarding, skateboarding, downhill mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, fishing/hunting, and foraging for gourmet mushrooms and other wild edibles in Oregon’s old growth rainforests.
If you’d like to book a concert or guitar lesson, please email firstname.lastname@example.org