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Raphael McGregor's Guitarra de Aco featuring Tamar Korn

Raphael McGregor, Barbes, Brooklyn, New York

A special holiday edition of the Guitarra De Aco project, featuring Brain Cloud singer Tamar Korn!  We will do some unexpected songs to celebrate the first night of Hanukkah, Christmas, and the holiday season in general. 


Raphael McGregor's Guitarra de Aco

Start typing here to SEARCH for a venue, Barbes, Brooklyn, NY

Steel guitar and a horn section together! Join me and my great band as we play originals and covers in the jazz, funk, blues, and country catalogues.  Barbes is a great place to hear music, I'm proud to have played here every Monday for more than six years!

free, $10 suggested donation


Brain Cloud 10th Anniversary Show

Jalopy, 315 Columbia St., Brooklyn, NY

The Brain Cloud celebrates 10 years of great Western Swing!


Youtube vids, Cd sales, and snarky comments on FB:

Playing the very first Bigsby! 

Instrumentalists--especially guitarists-- and instrument collectors do not always get along. We tend to be annoyed at collectors driving up the prices of the things we need to use to do our jobs, and there is a general feeling of irritation at seeing guitars that should be being played locked up behind glass. But earlier today, I got the chance to play an amazing, truly unique instrument, and that would not have been possible without the man who purchased it, Gary Hustwit.  

This instrument was the very…

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Book Theft with Schoenberg 

Right before I graduated from college, I helped myself to a copy of Schoenberg’s Theory of Harmony from the library. (Yes, I feel bad about it) The section entitled “Chords with six or more tones,” contains some fascinating examples of very complicated polychords and some thoughts about why they sound so rich and harmonious, even consonant, when on paper they would appear to be harshly dissonant.  Schoenberg identifies a few aspects of this phenomenon such as the voicing, instrumentation, and method of…

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Napping with Schoenberg 

I love to nap. If I get a chance to nap, you can bet I’ll take it. A big part of my napping ritual is choosing the right music by which to fall asleep. This is an absurd endeavor because I inevitably take about five minutes painstakingly choosing the right piece, and then generally fall asleep within thirty seconds. Most of the time, I don’t hear or remember a note of what I chose. But every once in a while, I’ll sort of half wake up and be still asleep but also listening to the music.  I don’t know what…

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Some ideas for interesting comping with Lap Steel 


Chord Superimposition: The Vertical Version


One of the greatest things about the lap steel guitar is how difficult it is to play. Not only does it force you to be creative in your choices when playing solo, it also forces you to learn to “play nice” with other musicians. This post is about being clever with the limited choices you have on the steel, and using these ideas in collaboration with other musicians. We’ll be focusing on chords and rhythm playing.


Let’s say you’re playing a D7 (D F# A C)…

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Another Video from Retrofret 

I had a video-heavy couple of weeks right before the holidays.  Stay tuned for a music video, live show recording and live video from the Brain Cloud, New York's finest Western Swing band.  And here's a little promo video that we shot at Retrofret, NY's best guitar store (in my humble opinion...and that of many others who know way more than I do).  




Live in Central Park 

Recently I had the opportunity to play in Central Park at the beautiful Naumburg Bandshell with my trio; myself on lap steel, Jim Whitney on bass, and Larry Eagle on drums. It felt great to play for such a huge open space on such a lovely fall evening.  I've posted a few of the tracks here and I may put up a few more as they get ready.  Feel free to download and share with your friends! 

Video at Retrofret Guitars 

Had a fantastic time the other day playing at Retrofret Guitars, that place is incredible!  Hopefully they'll let me come in and do this again soon:


Gig Alert! 

It was nice to be the gig alert on WNYC this morning:


I'll be at Freddy's every third Thursday of the month at 8 pm.  We had our first one just now with Larry Eagle and Jim Whitney.  Man, those guys are unbelievable to play with.  After every gig is done I just find myself wishing we could play more!

Trumpet transcriptions for lap steel 

Originally Published on Mike Neer's "Lap Steelin'" Blog:


This month, I am very pleased to present a contribution from friend and fellow steel guitarist, Raphael McGregor, of NYC. Raphael has been busy cutting new trails with his steel guitar for years, and his first CD as leader, Fretless, is an excellent introduction to what is sure to be productive and creative career. Raphael has also played with some excellent bands, including Brazilian-infused Nation Beat, who

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