I heard Hank's first night on the Opry and I heard Little Jimmy Dickens' first night on the Opry. I remember Webb Pierce, Carl Smith, and Faron Young as "hot new acts," so "history" is a pretty big word for me. I never played particularly well and I never sang particularly well, but I've helped a lot of people have a little fun and think new directions over the years. What I do today is just more of the same, with a broad detour into entertainment journalism for some thirty years.
Not very often but the quality makes up for the quantity. I kinda got cloistered away by health problems for a long time and am gradually getting back in front of a few folks, especially for opportunities to perform with Mike Mosier, Linda Grimes, and the Red Clay Community Choir (they're all on "A Cupful Of Words."
As per my "Song Of The Wind," my influences go back to Genesis and come right up to the kids of today who are hanging in with honest music. Mama Maybelle (as per "Sweet Virginia Breeze") is a special influence, as are Mac Wiseman, Chet Atkins, Merle Travis, Luther Perkins, Johnny Cash, and Buck Owens. I don't sound like any of them -- their influence lay in making me want to be me like they are themselves.
I have three acoustic Gibsons (including a roundneck Dobro) and a handbuilt Dean Porter 12-string soprano guitar (mandotar, we call it). All four were used on "A Cupful Of Words," plus several of Mike's considerable array.
I have long called what I do "living room music." I'm beginning to think of it as "Hillbilly music for the 21st Century." The topics are a tad deep for the 1940's, perhaps, but the spirit of the wind in the trees survives.