Some of you may remember me writing a post about how I first discovered folk music and through it, Joan Baez. It was back in the mid sixties and, though it sounds a bit extreme, it changed my life. It wasn’t long before I decided to buy myself a cheap guitar and try my hand at playing. It was 1966 or 67 and my first guitar cost me £3 ($4.85).
I thought I was never going to be able to change chords and keep the rhythm flowing, but thankfully it just happened like magic one day. I placed a Joan Baez song on the record player (yes, we only had record players then) and played along with it until I was able to keep up with Joan. For some daft reason I chose a fast and complicated finger picking song. I have no idea why, but it certainly made slower songs easier for me to master. When I sourced this on YouTube and played it, memories of me sitting on my bed night after night practicing came flooding back to me.
It was the sixties, so I painted flowers all over my guitar. It was a cheap one, so it didn’t matter. I was soon to go to a very posh music shop in London’s West End and buy myself a really expensive and beautiful classical guitar. Now I was serious about playing.
I’ve had many guitars over the years, including a beautiful 12 string. I changed my playing style too, as I progressed. I still have three guitars – an electric acoustic, a solid electric and a Yamaha ‘Silent’ guitar which, as the name suggests, can be played through ear phones without annoying people around you. I haven’t played for some time now but, who knows? I may have a go again one day.
Imagine my surprise when I was told that my very first, 1960′s guitar was…..
HERE IN YORKSHIRE!
I had passed it on to my niece when she was just a child. I am amazed that she kept it and passed it on to her younger brother, who still has it. I expect his kids have all played around with it over the years too. He lives in Wales and brought it with him on a visit to his mum (my sister). He thought I might like to see it again.
MIGHT LIKE TO SEE IT?
I was over the moon! It’s a little battered about, but after almost fifty years, it’s hardly surprising. Here it is, in all it’s flower power splendour.
My 1960′s memorabilia – My little ‘Gospel Ship’ guitar
I wish it could transport me back in time. Back to the sixties.