Before resurfacing a few years ago with a couple of fine albums, local guitarist Peter Lang spent two decades in artistic exile, working a day job when music couldn't pay the bills. He's still a wonderful guitarist, concentrating on an American primitive repertoire that encompasses blues, folk, country, rag, and classical, all delivered with wit, wisdom, and technical agility. Lang and Leo Kottke were protégés of John Fahey, who signed both to his Takoma label in the early '70s, and you can still hear his influence in some of Lang's work. Lang has a new album, Testament, in the works. But for now there's a new live DVD/CD (snapshotmusic.com) from the archives of Charlotte's Web, a club in Rockford, Illinois. The DVD is a 2004 performance in which Lang regales the audience with his ever-more soulful playing, including moving tributes to late pals Fahey and Dave "Snaker" Ray. It comes with two CDs consisting of Lang's Web gigs from 1977-80. Together, it's a neat package of Lang pre- and post-hiatus. But you can catch his sunny self in the flesh at the Cedar. With Dave King.
Fri., Nov. 30, 8 p.m., 2007