Yasmin Williams Performs ‘Tiny Desk (Home) Concert’

See the guitarist show off a number of inventive musical techniques.

By Scott Bernstein Oct 19, 2021 11:04 am PDT

Yasmin Williams is featured in NPR Music’s latest Tiny Desk (Home) Concert. The acclaimed finger-style guitarist played three songs from her 2021 album, Urban Driftwood, as well as a tune off 2018’s Unwind.

The Virginia-based artist starts with “Juvenescence” in which she begins by performing the Urban Driftwood stunner in traditional fashion before laying the guitar on her lap for its rousing conclusion. Williams then explains how happy she is to play a Tiny Desk (Home) Concert and reveals she was first inspired to pick up a guitar by her love for the video game Guitar Hero II. “I never thought in a million years I’d go from playing that to being on here, so this is super super exciting for me,” Yasmin says.

Williams continues by showing off an unusual technique for Unwind’s “On A Friday Night” in which she hits the strings on her guitar with a mallet in a similar fashion to hammer dulcimer. Yasmin returns to Urban Driftwood to end the session with “Through The Woods” and “After The Storm.” The former features the instrumentalist accompanying her guitar work with percussion from tap shoes she wears. Williams wrote the latter after attending Black Lives Matter protests. “This song is kind of a reflection of how I was feeling,” Yasmin adds.

Watch the performance below:


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