Tuesday, June 25, 2019

So, You're the World Famous Guitarist - Tommy Emmanuel

and you have two daughters, one of them named Angelina, and you want to write a tune about her.

Here's how is turns out.


  1. Of all the non-classical musicians still alive I have come to like Tommy best, because he produces his magic without a "backup group," weird costumes, or a stage filled with ugly electronic batshit. T

    ommy's like a great concert pianist. He does it ALL BY HIMSELF, bares his soul fearlessly, and displays the wonder of his remarkable talent and individual character with freedom, joy and reck;ess abandon.

    This does not mean I disparage symphony orchestras, string quartets, or woodwind chamber ensembles, opera, oratorio, or instrumental solos from the classical literature that are written with an aartfully crfted ccompaniment (usually piano).

    All that is in a class dramaticaly different from the "groups" that started to pollute the culture in the mid-to-late 20th-centur none of whom would have any impact on the public without their electronic "aids" and outlandish costumes and bizarre physcal appearance. Dominated by heavy percussion, the stuff either makes me angry enough to leave the room, or mature enough when in mixed compsny to be able to grin and bear it

    I know.most probably think of me as an old fuddy duddy, but I've earned three college degrees in music, composed and performed music for the Church and in concert, written and producd two muical shows, made recordings posted on YouTube, and taught for nearly thrity years, so I believe I know what I'm talking about.

    All that eductiin means I can RECOGNIZE high quality when I hear it in ANY music medium, –– with the possible excptiin of Rock 'n Roll, which I have detested ever since it arrived as a force to be reckoned with in 1955. But TOMMY transcends all the crap, and stands out more than any other "POP" figure I know.

    Of course, Tommy is NOT really a "POP Figure," hE's a GREAT ARTIST who just happenns to have become immnsely popular, God bless him.

    1. Agree Franco. He is a heck of a composer. Give him a subject and he'll turn it into a feeling and then an enjoyable melody. Never had a lesson either.

      I liked the Beatles in the 60's and then the rock of the 70's but don't anymore and even then only liked a few bands. Aerosmith sure wasn't one of my list.

    2. Do you ever listen to Jazz -? I am no a jazz payer, but I thin it's marvellous art form.

      ART TATUM, OSCAR PETERSON, EUBIE BLAKE, GEORGE SHEARING, BILL EVANS, and great jazz singers like Alberta hunter, Bricktop, Ella Fitzgerald, Biliie Holliday, Sarah Vaughan, Blossom dearie, and the great clarinettist Benny Goodman, Gene Krupa, Linel Hampton, Haarry James, B9x Beiderbeck, the Dorsey Brothers, Glenn Miller, and all the other Big Bands and mst of the singers who went wuth them –– Helen O'connell Maragre Whiting, bea Wain, Doris day, etc.

      I love bradway Show Music too.

      By the way, The fantastic, which I quoted from ia post or two ago, was not a MOVI MUSICAL. It was an Off-Broadway Show that ran in New York for FORTY-FOUR YEARS. (1960-2004) By the time it closed some f the grandchildren from the original cast were playing in it.

      Not a gimmick. The Fantasticks was The Real Deal –– something very special –– a dear and beautiul thing that touched the hearts of millions.

      The American Pop Scene was great funtill 1955, and then i started to go South Big Time. The Fantasticks was a notable exception and so is much of the work of Stephen Sondheim whom I admire very much.

      I hope someday you can experience some of these things for yourself, even if it akes a bit of getting used to.

      The more things we can leanr to love in this world, the better off w are ––unless we falln ov with DRT, GRIME, {ERGERSIN, SLEAZE and DEGENERACY. In other words SEX, DRUGS & ROCK 'n ROLL, nd all the SHIT that'scome out of the ghetto ince the SICK-sties.

      Harlem was wonderful iduring the Jazz Age n the days of the Cotton Club showcasingall the Jazz Greats of the twentieth century. Today –– thanks to Sex,Drugs & Rock 'n Roll and Hip Hop, etc. it's a SHITPOT –– a Living Hell.

      Same thing happened to ALL our once-great cities –– and every state in the Left Coast.

      I hope I I don't need to tell you who to blame?


    3. I would say I like a few of the big band tunes, not many. Don't like any of the old jazz or blues stuff.

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  3. OK WAIT, KID....is someone ELSE playing BASS? I know enough about guitar playing to watch his fingers of both hands and think he's only playing the melody and some chords but THE BASS? Then I watch and think "Maybe HE'S playing it ALL!"??? WHAT? Can't BE!!!!!

    1. Z, Yea, hard to see since the right hand is mostly behind that mic. But yes, he is playing every note. Usually he plays with a thumb pick which turns the thumb into the left hand on the piano while the fingers play the rhythm and melody like the right hand would. On this tune he is using a regular straight pick but still playing the bass too.

      You can see it really clear on his Endless Road tune, where he also uses a straight pick.

    2. I'm a pianist and singer, no guitarist, but THAT IS IMPOSSIBLE! This man IS the guitar!!!

    3. Yes, Z, he IS. He's an authentic genius who can turn a singe acoustic guitar into an entire orchestra.

      Thy say Chet Arkins could do that too, and may even have invented the genre, but without knowing very much about the pop guitar scene I've gotten the distinct tinpression that Tommy Emmanuel is absolutely UNIQUE.

      As a well-trained, sometime-virtuoso pianist and composer, myself, I know I understand musical values, and the mechanics of how music is constructed well enough to be able to say that with some authority.

    4. Z, he works real hard at it.

      Franco, Chet was listening to Merle Travis who played with his thumb and one finger. Chet thought he was using 3 so he taught himself to play using thumb and three fingers. Tommy heard Chet on the radio playing Windy and Warm and decided to learn how to play the multiple parts simultaneously, which he obviously was very successful.