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Genres You Will Love
Rock: Acoustic Rock: Hard Rock Moods: Solo Male Artist Moods: Type: Acoustic Moods: Type: Tributes

By Location
United States - Tennessee

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Keith Leedham

It all started with a record player and a guitar…

My sister had one of those suitcase style record players. It was probably the early 1970’s. She wasn’t home, but told me it was okay to listen to her records. I got to hear two things that fundamentally changed who I was, and who I would become. The first was a Monkee’s album, “Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd.”. The second was The Beatles, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”. Now I can not say that it was at that moment I had some sort of epiphany and knew what I wanted to do for the rest of my life… but I did know that I was changed, and this music did something to me that nothing else did. Fast forward to when I was thirteen. At this point I knew I had at least some musical talent. I could sing. People told me I sang well, and I loved doing it. I had been bugging my parents to buy me a guitar for a few years. They thought it would just be something that I’d “play with” for a few weeks, loose interest in and allow to collect dust. But I guess I wore them down. My Dad and I drove to my cousin's house in Northport, NY where he bought me my first guitar. A used green Aria hollow body. I locked myself in my room for a few days with that guitar and a Beatles song book. When I came out I played “Let It Be” for my Mom. I was officially a musician.
As for that guitar… when I was 19 and stupid I sold it because it wasn’t a Strat, or a Les Paul. I don't want to get all weepy here but I wanted to find one of these guitars again. One, because let's face it... It's gorgeous. But two, as a tribute to my folks. I know they probably couldn't afford that guitar when they bought it, but they knew it was important to me, so they found a way. What a disrespectful ass I must have seemed like when I sold the original guitar. Not that I was trying to be... I just didn't know any better. So after a long search on the internet I found another one that was nearly identical to the original. Two different luthiers and more money than I’d like to admit later, we’ve come full circle.
Many bands, projects, albums, guitars and years have come and gone. Yet, not much has really changed. Music still drives who I am. I never became “rich and famous” but I’m not really sure that’s what I wanted anyway. Don’t get me wrong, it would have been nice, but not necessary. I write, record, and eventually release what I’ve done. I’ve worked with and count as friends some of the most amazing musicians on the planet. But that’s not all that important either. What is important is what we’ve created, the songs. Because that’s what changed me that day I was lying on the living room floor listening to my sister’s records. And if we get lucky, maybe one day we’ll write a song that does the same for some other kid lying on his living room floor…