Some of life's most powerful interests and avenues of expression begin at an early age. My desire to play the guitar started at the tender age of eight. A neighbor first introduced me to the wonders of this marvelous instrument. My interest was immediately sparked as I watched her play. I was hooked! I knew that music would play a major role in my life. The first guitar I held was a modestly priced instrument, (red, white and blue!), of questionable quality.
Formal instruction was essential and with tremendous motivation and dedication, I made rapid progress in my studies. By the time I had reached early adulthood, my talents were such that I was able to enter into collaboration with like-minded musicians, eventually leading to the creation of a band focusing on cutting-edge experimental rock and heavy metal. After many well-received live engagements and promising recording sessions, my disillusionment with the commercial music scene began to grow, eventually leading to my putting aside my beloved instrument for nine years.
As I grew personally, exploring other methods of artistic expression, my music career came into perspective. I realized just how important music was to me. It was becoming more apparent with each passing year that the genuine expression of my musical soul might best be articulated in acoustic styles rather than the more provocative and energetic electric medium of my earlier years. Finger-style artists such as Alex Degrassi (with whom I have studied) and Michael Hedges spoke to me in ways that other guitar virtuosos had not. It was their commanding influence that brought me back to music, this time focusing exclusively on the acoustic medium.
Once again I was dedicated to music with a passion I had never before experienced ... as though a higher power was guiding me to a deeper, more spiritual involvement with this medium, resulting in a satisfaction and fulfillment unmatched in my younger days. I hope that, in some way, I can reach and inspire others to similar interest and expression. Ultimately, arousing and nurturing such interest in others is undeniably even more fulfilling. This would explain my compelling desire to instruct others willing to study music and the guitar, a pursuit that has harnessed my wholehearted commitment.
John Tinger is performing with fellow songwriters, MaryJustice Lucas and Chapman James at the Madison Gazebo, Main Street, Madison, Alabama, Thursday, July 7th at 6:30pm.