How cool to welcome back Tommy Emmanuel to Bluesfest. A master entertainer, multi-instrumentalist and most in-demand session guitarist Tommy Emmanuel went on to take on the world as a solo performer– and continues to do so with a packed annual touring schedule that sees him play not just solo concerts , but also hosting Tommy Emmanuel Bandcamps and Guitar Retreats where he passes on his skills to a new breed of players.
Tommy Emmanuel was destined to become a world-class musician. Given his first guitar at age four, he started working professionally just two years later in a family band, the Emmanuel Quartet. Growing up with his brother Phil he was in the Midget Surfaris (!) and The Trailblazers, and after finishing school he quickly became one of Australia’s most in-demand rock musicians, playing guitar in a succession of bands, including one of Australia’s best-known acts, Dragon. He supplemented that with a side job as a studio musician, playing on albums by the likes of Air Supply and Men At Work, and on commercial jingles.
He is one of those rare guitarists who possess so many incredible qualities, moving from one extreme to another, stylistically as well as technically, with amazing ease. His thumbpick and three-finger approach is simply without peer and led to the master Chet Atkins, who christened Emmanuel a Certified Guitar Player, making him one of only five musicians to receive the C.G.P. distinction from the master. 2 Grammy Award nominations, 2 ARIA Awards and repeated honours in the Guitar Player magazine reader’s poll means his trophy cabinet is starting to burst… but he aint finished yet.
Having just welcomed a new daughter into the world Tommy says: “When you have a child at my age, boy, do you have a reason to get going. You have a lot to live for!”
Saturday 20th April, 2019