When he plays solo shows, 63-year-old Ribot says he feels free to call on his entire music history. And that dates back to his beginnings on classical guitar at the age of ten, through his work as a sideman from ’79 through ’85 with legends like Brother Jack McDuff, Wilson Pickett, Chuck Berry and others, a four-year stint with the Lounge Lizards and numerous collaborations with New York’s downtown avant-garde musicians like John Zorn.
Along the way, Ribot has recorded nearly two dozen albums under his name that show the wide-reaching scope of his guitar skills. He has an homage to Cuban composer Arsenio Rodriguez with his group Marc Ribot y Cubanos Postizos, an exploration of the music of avant-garde saxophonist Albert Ayler with Spiritual Unity, and a jaunt into Philly soul with the Young Philadelphians. His affinity for punk and no wave are evident in Rootless Cosmopolitans.