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Evening all.  Can't believe I'm writing instead of playing.  Like I might have something to say that is of interest to anyone else.  Spending time with an old acoustic friend just leads me to think of what all a guitar can accomplish.  Fact (or myth) has it that the first guitar ever in North America landed here in my locale in the late 1500's, arriving with the French Huguenots at nearby Ft. Caroline.  Something between a lute and the early gut-stringed classicals.  Even if the intonation was bad, at least the instrument would have made a reasonable defense against the sand-gnats that own this place.  Anyway, enough history for the moment.  There has always been something magical about the guitar.  Whether it fulfills the needs of the soloist, or brings a bunch of friends together to jam, it somehow seems to bridge all gaps and differences between folks.  Ethnicity and financial status all become unimportant when a person plays a guitar, even if they don't play it well!  In fact, I believe those to be the times that provide the highest levels of cooperation, as the great player always seems to come forward to help those of us that could never imagine such talent.  Which brings me to some sense of a point.  All of us are different, yet alike in many ways.  Some love the sound, others the beauty of a fine instrument.  I've watched CNC machines make perfect likenesses of various components, yet remain awestruck at a magical point in time when I visited Wayne Henderson's shop, watching the man pick up an ancient Craftsman drill with an obviously razor sharp wood bit in it, casually talking to me as he sat the body of a spectacular Brazilian OM on it's heelcap, focusing briefly to drill the hole for what must have been a planned trussrod.  While this would have a week-long engineering planning session for me (that would have pegged the pucker-meter hard enough to bend the needle), it was just a momentary blip in time for this true gentleman.  These otherwise insignificant moments in life seem to keep a lot of us in the guitar world attached.  Whether it be my instructor making feral dogs come to tears playing a $100 laminated box, or the humility of a master luthier carving the neck of an instrument that I'll hardly ever be able to financially justify in my playing-inability's mind, the guitar somehow brings us together to appreciate what skills and talents we all possess.  May you all enjoy your music, beautiful guitars and the great people that this thing brings to us.

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Comment by Kelley Hatlee on February 2, 2013 at 11:51am

Well said, Kevin!

Comment by Kevin Ellington on February 2, 2013 at 2:25pm

Thanks Kelley.  Had a few exceptionally well-spent nights recently with another pretty amazing guy, Don Wilson.  One of the most gracious people I can say I've known in all of the years of guitar-love.  Watching him build is as close as I'll likely come to viewing true artistry.  The end result continues to be one of the best sounding acoustics I've ever played.  The guitar continues to provide blessings and inspiration in so many forms.  In this case, it's introduced me to one of the nicest people I think I have or will ever meet.  If Don is in fact one of Wayne Henderson's best students, Wayne can stand back with great pride at what he passed along.  Amazing instruments.  Everyone be safe.  


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