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I play a variety of instruments and styles. My first love was acoustic fingerstyle blues guitar. I first heard this music courtesy of John Pearse’s legendary ‘Hold down a chord’ series in the 60s, which exposed me to the music of people like Rev. Gary Davis, Mississippi John Hurt, Sam McGee and Big Bill Broonzy, people who if it were not for John I may never have discovered. Much later, back in the 70s, I was turned on to Irish/Celtic music through listening to John Peel’s radio shows which regularly featured some of the great Irish/Celtic bands such as De Danaan, Sweeny’s Men, Planxty and The Boys of the Lough. I learned to play mandolin and tenor banjo and started going out to folk sessions. I got to the stage where I was semi-pro and playing in a variety of settings but now just play for fun.
I am a chronic GAS sufferer (Guitar Acquisition Syndrome). This sounds like a joke but believe me it is a serious addiction! Over the years many of my ‘keeper’ instruments have gone to the great eBay in the sky to fund my latest fad (usually a new style or technique, e.g. slide guitar, flatpicking, Travis picking, and so on).
I retired recently and have already blown most of my small retirement fund on stringed instruments. These include a National NRP wood body triolian guitar and a hand built mandolin from an an American luthier which I ‘pulled the trigger’ on just before Christmas and have yet to receive! As you can see GAS is a serious condition which perhaps needs to be brought to the attention of the media.
Since retiring I have rekindled my interest in folk and Celtic styles together with Bluegrass, Old-Timey and Appalachian, played mostly on the octave mandolin pending the arrival of the new mando!
I have a small site on Youtube which features a number of acoustic blues and instrumentals which I recorded (quite amateurishly direct to a Zoom Q3…) some years ago (search for Deepriver100).
I am originally from London but now based in central Suffolk near Stowmarket in case anyone would like to chat and compare GAS symptoms!
The current line-up:
Larrivee all mahogany OM3 guitar
Eastman OM3 guitar
National NRP wood body resonator
Aiersi brass parlour resonator
Blueridge BR-371 parlour guitar
Richwood Octave Mandolin
Mia Pulaski F style mandolin (pending!)
More to follow, no doubt…