Guitarist Giuseppe Leopizzi Dies in Italy

Guitarist and composer Giuseppe Leopizzi Friday, June 1st. Leopizzi’s health deteriorated suddenly and rapidly. He died within days of acute leukemia.

Giuseppe Leopizzi had been playing the acoustic guitar for over 35 years, in either standard or alternate tunings. His influences ranged from The Incredible String Band to Neil Young to Joni Mitchell, to Michael Hedges to Preston Reed. In 1982 he founded the group Aes Dana.

As a harp and guitar duo, or with the group Aes Dana, he played at Festival De Dinan, France; O’Carolan Harp Festival, Ireland; The World Harp Congress, Cardiff, UK; The Jazz and Pop Harp Festival, Illinois, USA; European Harp Symposium, Italy. He was awarded prizes at Folkautore (Turin, 1981), Billboard Contest (1991), John Lennon Songwriting Contest (1999) and 2002 USA Songwriting Competition (1st Prize – category instrumental).

As a duo with the harpist Rosellina Guzzo, he specialized in original compositions for harp and guitar. Rosellina and Giuseppe played with some of the most acclaimed artists of the international folk music scene, such as The Chieftains, Jacqui McShee and Jerry Conway, Robin Williamson, Paddy Keenan, and Máirtin O’Connor. They performed at Harpae International Festival, Italy; Festival Mediterraneo, Italy; San Francisco and Los Angeles Borders Showcases.

His most recent CD was Gelkhamar.