My son and I went to see Tommy Emmanuel play here in Richmond, VA last night. My son wanted to have Tommy sign his Tacoma C1C Chief, so he brought it along.
The strap on his case broke while we were waiting outside the theater, and the guitar hit the sidewalk hard. I opened the case and found the Output Jack/Endpin had hit the concrete, pushing the tailblock in and cracking and separating the soft cedar top from the sides. The thing is completely unplayable now.
My son was more crushed than the guitar.
The doors opened and we proceeded in. There was a line forming for a "meet & greet" and we were informed that you had to be on a list to see Tommy. I explained what had happened to my son's guitar outside, and they gave us VIP passes and took us down to the dressing room to meet with him.
Tommy was a very gracious, kind gentleman; speaking with my son about staying active with his music. He then took a look at the Tacoma and commented on how he has a Chief just like this one. He looked at the damage and told my son not to worry - his "Mouse" guitar had been damaged worse than this, several times, and it has always been made playable again (he had it onstage last night). Tommy then signed the guitar and posed for a photo with my son.
This completely made my son's night! He told me as were leaving the theater that this was the best night of his life. Tommy Emmanuel was a really good guitarist before then, now he is a Hero to my son.
What a sweet man!
I really enjoy his playing, and have 3 of his DVDs - it is good to hear that he has a heart as well... :-)
I only have 2 DVDs ( Guitar Talk & Up Close ) But I do have a lot of Power Tabs for his works.
I think the closest he ever gets to me is when he sneaks into Lexington, Ky., for a spot on Woodsongs Old Time Radio Hour.
I have seen a couple of Y.T.s where he would do things with fan's Guitars, and he appeared a very gracious man in them.
It's really great that you & your son got to meet him. It must have been truly inspirational.
I got interested in Tommy Emmanuel after I saw the "Centerstage" PBS special. In addition to being a great musician, he seemed to have a warm and generous personality. Your story proves that this is true. What a great experience for you and your son!
I've seen Tommy play 5 times and he's amazing. I saw him at Winfield, KS. Beppe Gambetta was playing, it was about 50 degrees outside, and Beppe said he couldn't play because it was too cold. Tommy walked onstage. Played the rest of Beppe's set and then proceeded to play his entire set. It was really chilly and Tommy never missed a lick. Amazing player and an even nicer person. I'm a fan for life. He also signed my Winfield ballcap. One of only a few CGP's that Chet bestowed the honor upon.