Li Daiguo
Li Daiguo plays Pipa, photo by chan_qu
Li Daiguo plays Guzheng, photo by Zhu Rui
Li Daiguo plays piano with pajamas on, photo by Shen Wei

Li Daiguo is a prominent figure in China’s experimental, world, and new music communities.

Born in 1981 in Oklahoma, USA, to Chinese/Taiwanese parents, Li Daiguo received training in music from childhood on a variety of instruments in various styles, including western classical music and bluegrass (violin, upright bass, piano), Chinese classical music (erhu, pipa), Finnish folk music, Carnatic music, Shona Mbira, and contemporary classical composition and improvisation. After relocating to mainland China in 2004, Li began to develop his compositional style and blend of extended techniques for a variety of instruments, particularly pipa, guzheng, bawu, cello, upright bass, violin, and prepared piano. His playing and compositional style makes frequent use of polyrhythms, acoustic sounds that “sound electronic,” an eastern sense of space and emptiness, and dark spirituality.

In recent years he has taken part in performances at such venues and events as Carnegie Hall (NYC), Cite De La Musique (Paris), Oct-Loft Jazz Festival (Shenzhen), Shanghai PSA, UCCA (Beijing), Super Deluxe (Tokyo) , Desert Daze (Joshua Tree), Festival/Tokyo, Musicultura (Italy), Festival in Fes (Morocco), World Sacred Spirit (India), Tomorrow Music Festival (Shenzhen), Sonic Protest Music Festival (France, Belgium), Culturescapes Arts Festival (Switzerland), Sally Can't Dance Avantegarde Music Festival (Beijing), and Aranya (jinshanling/oceanside).

As a composer and producer, Li has been commissioned by the likes of Cloud Gate 2, Guangdong Modern Dance company, Guangzhou Ballet company, artists Fang Lu, Tao Hui, Serge Onnen, and directors Luka Yang, Roxy Shih, and Justin Chon. He has released albums on labels such as Modern Sky, Chant records, Akuphone, WV Sorcerer, Old Heaven Books, and Ruby Eyes/Chitong (Taihe). His performances and releases have been written about in The Wire, Pitchfork, Tiny Mix Tapes, and other platforms. He is signed to Pollux (Modern Sky).