We were recently at the Hagerstown Blues Festival - despite the rain mid afternoon we were treated to great sets from Mike Zito and Lil Ed with his Blues Imperials, but the real treat was Matt Schofield closing out the evening.
Wow..just wow. What an incredible guitarist, musician and person. It was a very special experience to be perched for a while behind his blazing Two Rock Amplifier to hear that tone, the feeling saturating my hearing. The intensity of his playing has to be heard live, no British imitation but the real deal, soulful, classy, gritty but smooth - complete with an encore jam with local favorite Paul Pfau and Mike Zito.
It was a performance that rocked me to my bones. I've not really been interested in picking up a guitar for many years, this inspired me. It had me thinking differently, in much the same way that my photography work and vision has changed over time with consistent work and care there is no reason why my guitar playing cannot be the same, and I already see those results. Where once passing or seeing my guitars would tug at my heart strings, not playing them as I never thought I could be good enough to be happy, each song, each lick and each melody I learn are bringing a joy I could not have imagined.
Many thanks to Matt Makowski of Hagerstown Magazine for the VIP tickets and to Jason Turner of Turner Photography Studio for the Photo Pass without which I would not have been able to experience this is the same way.
Below the pictures is a video that someone filmed at the festival..give it a whirl..it's incredible playing.