Coming from a family of guitarists is difficult when you have freakishly small hands and a penchant for ballet. Being born in the state that claims Willie, Stevie Ray and Blind Lemon wasn't much help either. There is, it seems, sort of a Texas-blues shame that descends upon the defiant. But who were we to resist fate? Dad (a B.B. King devotee) eventually provided us a six-string acoustic-electric on which to learn. But where to turn? Lessons are great, but we need something to practice with--new strings, a choice of picks and a new cable so this piece-of-shit amp will stop hissing. Matter of fact, how about a new amp? Oh, and we'd also like to see a vast array of musicians who are far superior to us.
Maybe Rick Derringer, the man whose band The McCoys stomped the Beatles out of the No. 1 chart position with "Hang on Sloopy." Or Joe Satriani, The Stratoblasters, former Fleetwood Mac-er Rick Vito and Phil Keaggy. Whatever the genre, the Dallas Guitar Show and MusicFest has the appropriate icon. It's a trade show, a festival and showcase for new models. There are vendors from Ernie Ball, Peavey, Sabian and more. The auction offers items such as a letter handwritten by Elvis, George Harrison's Harptone 12-string, a Sex Pistols drum set and Gram Parsons' custom-made acoustic. As ax addicts and music-history freaks mingle, we'll bet our box of Ernie Ball Slinkys that sometime during the event, three things will occur: an argument on the merits of Ronnie James Dio, the sale of a lightning-bolt guitar strap to a young indie rocker and our reunion with a fine little ukulele.