Thursday, April 22, 2010

Sam Lightnin' Hopkins - Cotton

It was the summer of 1977 when I discovered the worn and faded Album jacket that housed a slightly warped vinyl album with Lightnin' Hopkins singing his blues. I am not sure why my father had bought it, he did have a guitar that he would occasionally pull out and play one or two blues riffs before he put it back down five minutes later. This, however, was enough to spark my interest. The guitar I acquired at that time was the one that my sister did not play too often. As most teenage girls of her age, I am sure she wanted to be Karen Carpenter or Joan Baez or someone similar with her over-sized guitar. There was no real direction to my guitar attempts before Bluegrass met me during my Senior year in high school. After that moment, everything opened up.

The banjo is an odd and delightful instrument, mostly odd and loud. Annoying has been used before. My room mate in boarding school, James, brought a banjo into our room. I immediately confiscated it and "learned" a tune or two. I promptly purchased my own banjo and was murdering several songs on a regular basis. My friend David soon inquired about this new banjo deal and was curious on how to play. David is a musician, this I was not prepared for. He knew how to play the guitar and had timing and an excellent ear. Soon there after, I was plunking on the guitar while David passed me quickly on the banjo. We had a lot of fun, wasted a lot of time, listened to a lot of records. Lightin' was right there hangin' out.

 I will, however, take credit for the all-time world record for spinning in circles, on two wheels, in a wheelchair.

I hope you enjoy this from Mr. Hopkins.


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