A few decades ago, I flew to Sitka, Alaska, to perform for the kids at Blatchly Middle School. After I’d finished playing for all the students, while I was chatting with the principal and several of the teachers, a teenage boy walked into the room. He couldn’t have been more than 14. I could tell that there was something different about him. It was not evident in his manner or his walk, but rather in the apparent anxiety the teachers displayed in his presence. Having gigged at thousands of schools in 48 states, I quickly understood that this boy was what administrators call a “difficult student.” Uninhibited, the boy strode right over to me pointing to the guitar in my hands. He was all business. “Can you play ‘Smoke on the Water?’” he asked matter of factly. Having pretty well completely missed rock and roll as a genre, I was Continue Reading

Categories: Performing.