Guitar – the early days

by Ken on July 1, 2009

I started out with a gut string guitar which I purchased for the last 14 bucks that I had in Tijuana, Mexico. Somehow, owning it gave me the gumption to actually learn to play the thing.

During my summer of selling Fuller Brush I stumbled upon a home that affected my life in a rather startling way.

Music playing and development, at least for me, consisted of periods of  growth, punctuated by rather long level plateaus where nothing much changed.  My periods of growth were always marked by some event.

From this home I heard music that changed me forever. This fellow was playing a finger style guitar. It was patterned after a guy named Chet Atkins. I was hooked.

So I got many of Chet’s records and I listened and copied. And I learned.

I did much in the way of instrumental – and singing did not, nor does it still, come naturally. But I tried it anyway.

Some of these early recording, which I have stumbled upon, are fun, at least for me, to hear and to recall.

This was a fun one I remember. I was in college when I recorded this one.

The Birds and the Bees

That was my gut string guitar from Mexico.

I messed with some classical stuff – but only used it to expand my reach a bit.

Just before David was born, I purchased my Martin D-76. I’ve treasured that guitar for the 31 years that I’ve owned it. Most of the recordings I found were done with that one.

Sorry for the skip in this next one. I do not know why.

  Broken Dreams

and, of similar style:

  I’ve got a name.

I messed a bit with dual recording. This was my old gut string again.

Cool Clear Water

She was Gone

This one I remember recording in the late 1970’s.

Fire and Rain

And one by Pete Seger:

Inch by Inch

I loved the old country song – I mean from the hillbilly world:

Stop Kickin my Dawg.

Another that meant a bit to me was this John Denver piece:

This old guitar.

I’ve always wanted to write some songs.

I have many which I did not record – a shame. I need to relearn them. But I found these:

Patry Cat

And this one which I wrote during my wife’s absence.

“Like the Air” – now retitled “The Essence of my Dream”

Which I later recorded using a bit better equipment. But I think I like the first one a bit better:

I let the guitar go for many years. But I recently picked it back up, inspired by a young violin player who is, as of this writing, dating my niece. He and my sister’s husband, Guy, along with my son, Bryan, made me realize that I need to get back to doing this. I was shocked at the ease that the guitar came back to me – but with an extended music understanding that I’d gotten from my jazz playing.

I intend to create many more songs and get them up here to share.

But these are my early ones.

I hope you enjoy them as have I.

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