Hans Tammen started playing guitar in 1972 in various rock bands. He also studied classical guitar for a while. But his unusual approach to the guitar began 1979 after hearing Sonny Sharrock's solo on the live version of Memphis Underground. Since then his sound-oriented and experimental approach has become an integral part of most of his performances. In the 1980s he mainly developed various jazz guitar styles, from Freddie Green's acoustic big band playing and jazz standards to rather Sharrock-ish interpretations of the Coltrane/Dolphy/Coleman heritage. But he also performed pieces by Cage and Logothetis with New Music ensembles, and he used sequencers, analog synthesizers and other electronic effects along with his guitar. In the 1990s he concentrated on his unique sounds and on collaborations with other art forms.
Hans Tammen creates music that has been described as an alien world of bizarre textures and a journey through the land of unending sonic operations. He produces rapid-fire juxtapositions of radically contrasting and fascinating sounds, with micropolyphonic timbres and textures, aggressive sonic eruptions, but also quiet pulses and barely audible noises - through means of his Endangered Guitar and interactive software programming, by working with the room itself, and, as a critic observed, with his "...fingers stuck in a high voltage outlet". Signal To Noise called his works "...a killer tour de force of post-everything guitar damage".
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