The Artesian Guitar Quartet

Music from different times and places expressed through the intimate voice of the guitar.

The Artesian Guitar Quartet was founded in 2010 and currently features guitarists James Erickson, Michael Roberts, Laura Lessard and Harris Becker. The programs the quartet presents are highly innovative, including a wide variety of music ranging from Bach to the Beatles. They have performed at The Dickens Festival, The Long Island Guitar Festival, The Art League of Long Island, The Rensselaerville Historical Society, the Babylon Arts Council , The Steinberg Museum of Art and at the Songe D’été en Musique festival in Quebec. In September 2013 the quartet did a tour of Quebec with performances for Quebec Rural University, Sainte-Agnès in Lac-Mégantic and St. Vital in Lambton, Quebec. Individually the members have played concerts and given master classes throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and South America. As guitar instructors they are or have been affiliated with Long Island University, Nassau Community College, Queens College, The Bronx House Music School, Usdan Center for the Performing Arts and The Richard Strauss Conservatory in Munich.

“…gave the evening a note of nobility” - Quebec Rural University

"The quartet's playing as an ensemble was exquisite. The music they chose spanned the centuries of music history and was thoroughly engaging and captivating. The audience was riveted to their every note throughout their performance".- Spotlight

James Erickson

James Erickson

JAMES ERICKSON has an active career teaching and performing throughout the New York metropolitan area and Long Island. James is an adjunct instructor of music at Nassau Community College, LIU Post, and Suffolk County Community College. James holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in music history and performance from Long Island University, where he was awarded “Outstanding Performance in Guitar Studies”. As a classical guitar soloist, James has performed on tour in the United States, Europe, and Canada.  James often performs with the Artesian Guitar Quartet, the ensemble has performed for the Port Washington Arts Council and the Babylon Village Arts Council in various concert series. James is also a founding member of Guitar Trilogy, a guitar trio that performs a variety of classical and contemporary repertoire.  The group’s first CD “Short Stories”, features the music of Bach, de Falla, Ellington, and Albeniz.  “… flashes of virtuoso musicianship rendering quality classical or folk-inspired music from aroundthe world.” (Southampton Press)

As an electric guitarist, his studies have included lessons from jazz guitarist Howard Morgen and rock virtuoso Paul Gilbert. James has an extensive recording and performing experience, and is currently involved in many diverse musical projects.  He is the guitarist for Tradewinds, an eleven-piece band that performs at corporate events and club dates throughout the tri-state area.  In 2011, the group was voted “Best LI Cover Band” by the Long Island Press.  James also performs with Walking The Line , a musical tribute to Johnny Cash, where he performs the electric guitar parts of Luther Perkins.  Currently, James teaches guitar at the Long Island Institute for Guitar Studies, a program of comprehensive guitar instruction at LIU Post.  For the past eight years, he has taught and performed at the “Songe d’été en Musique” an annual music festival in Quebec, Canada. He is also the assistant director of the Long Island Guitar Festival and offers private and online guitar instruction.






Artesian Guitar Quartet- 2010.