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This Is for All Back-up Guitarists

Kenneth Avery is a Southern humorist with well over a thousand fans. The charm and wit in his writing span a nearly a decade.

This man is NOT a back-up guitarist.

This man is NOT a back-up guitarist.

Starting Up

and I am not really a history nut. But the person(s) who were responsible for one of our most-favorite musical instruments, the first six-string acoustic guitar, was an Italian Luthier, Gaetano Vinaccia. People who developed the modern design of the acoustic guitars being used today. These guys are to be credited: Spanish Luthier, Antonio Torres Jurado, set the guitaar's evolution roiling, so the modern design of acoustic guitars commonly used today.

Right? Did you get all that? I did. And while I am waxing intelligent about guitar history, I started to learn the guitar in 1974. Little did I realize that the guitar is no innocent bandit hiding in the sage grass awaiting a stagecoach carrying gold. No.The guitar, I admit, if used with a soft touch and plenty of patience, one can eventually grow into a highly-successful guitarist.

But . . .did you read anything in my last sentence about the word, 'famous' to join another word, 'successful?' Good. Proves that you are a careful observer. The truth be told, not everyone holds the strings forever. No. A person's patience can only stretch so far and those like me, washed-out and here I am. In a few years after I married, I took the guitar back up and strummed it a few times. But didn't get famous or that successful. I love God, but He's not in the business to award each dream for famous and successful. Just successful? Sure.

Okay? Now I love to listen to noted guitarists such as: Les Paul; Chet Atkins; Jimi Hendrix; Eric Clapton and Carlos Santana.I can say clearly say that these very guys not only tasted fame and fortune, but ate both frequently on a sometimes daily or weekly basis, depending on their gig schedules and record contract obligations.
So take it from me, a once guitar-lover did give it the old college try and failed when the last few seconds of the game clock hit zero. Was I ever madly-depressed. Nope. A lot. So like many others who have failed learning the guitar or other tasks, we learn to live with it.

Keith Richards, co-founder of Rolling Stones.

Keith Richards, co-founder of Rolling Stones.

A Few Quotes From Master Guitarists Who Comment About Playing The Guitar . . .

Keith Richards
⦁ “Music is a necessity. After food, air, water, and warmth, music is the important piece of the puzzle to complete the music.

Jimi Hendrix

⦁ “Music doesn’t lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music.”

Mark Knopfler
⦁ “There should be laughter after pain, there should be sunlight after rain, these things have always been the same, so why worry now?”

Eddie Van Halen
⦁ “If you want to be a rock star or just be famous, then run down the street naked, you’ll make the news or something. But if you want music to be your livelihood, then play, play, play and play! And eventually, you’ll get to where you want to be.”

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Now to Look at Someone Else

who is pretty lonesome right now and every day of the week. I am talking about the guitarists only named as "additional musicians who played on this album blah . . .blah . . .blah." To me, this would be a sorry way to write an extra guitarist as additional. Even the adjective sounds to shameful that it sucks. There lies Ken Avery, an additional hub-writer 20 years or so. See how awful that this epilogue sucks!

I wish that for a short while before I leave this world that God, in His infinite wisdom, would allow me to be graced in order to play the guitar. Now allow me to let you in on a musical fact about guitars: there is a world of difference in strumming the guitar and playing the guitar. I think that you know the difference. But for my guitar hobby, I had much rather play the guitar instead of one of those "additional" guitarists whom I happen to see on one swelter July night 1987, Tupelo, MS.

My wife, daughter, and my wife's family were enjoying a Tupelo annual event: the Gospel Music Concert of The Year, featuring famous, talented Gospel Music singers from around the south. The singing began at 7 p.m. and lasted until 1 a.m. Honestly, it was a great time.

All except watching a pure shameful-act-in-motion. Sometimes even today, I can recall the face and body language of this guy who was an 'additional' guitarist who sat near the quartet that was singing. The poor guy's name was never mentioned. Shameful to the Gospel group for leaving his name off because he was playing for them and their fans.

And the Gospel group sang about six good songs. With the humble-spirited 'additional' guitarist just playing the strings off his guitar. I almost wept. And anyone would who had a heart. I almost stood-up to shout just how awful that this poor guitarist was being treated. I ask, wouldn't you as well?

Sure you would. The guy was clean-cut, well-dressed, and did not do one thing to bring attention to himself. This is a true mark of selflessness. When this group finished their part of the concert, they thanked the audience several times and walked off the stage.

While the "additional" guitarist put his guitar into his guitar case, smiled at the audience, never said a word and that one gesture (waving) has went with me to always be careful because we never know if an "additional" guitarist, or another gifted person is there.

April 07, 2021_____________________________________________________

Guitarist today, are not JUST males, but Girl Power.

Guitarist today, are not JUST males, but Girl Power.

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© 2021 Kenneth Avery

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