Eric Kershaw, who died on 18 February 1983, was one of the last great representatives of the 'swing' era in Britain. In the 1930's Eric's guitar could be heard regularly on the radio in a programme entitled 'Eric Kershaw and his Rhythmic Guitars' and later he played with top bands such as Jack Parnell's Orchestra and Cyril Stapleton. In the sixties Eric played for many shows in the West End including Expresso Bongo and the Benny Hill Show. He became well-known for his various publications including the best-selling 'Dance Band Chords for Guitar', whichj sold 7,000,000 copies in the UK alone ! Kershaw was one of the very best teachers of the plectrum guitar and in 1970 he was appointed Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer in Jazz Guitar at the City of Leeds College of Music, an appointment he retained until he retired in july 1981. Many students of the guitar had the opportunity to learn the secrets of the trade from him. He was a brilliant teacher of the instrument, one of the best. His methods were thorough, unorthodox and highly effective. Though he did not suffer fools gladly, with enthusiastic students he could be endlessly patient and full of an inimitable dry Yorkshire sense of humour.
He made several recordings with various jazz groups, and gave many recitals, both solo and with students. His plectrum tone and his legato phrasing of a melodic line had to be heard to be believed. In his jazz solos he placed each note with impeccable precision and a lifetime's experience. Though influenced by the playing of Django Reinhardt, Eric Kershaw created his own immediately identifiable style. His recordings cannot do justice to the sheer magic of his live concerts. He was a great player whose stature was appreciated by all who heard him or had the privilege of playing with him and we hope that through this latest and final recording, students of the guitar may further their ability.