His parents divorced when he was six years old, after which he was raised by his mother. He was the youngest of three boys and a girl. He started out on the ukulele , later moving on to the fiddle , but made a swap with his brother, Lowell, when he was nine: an old pistol and some chores for a guitar. Because of his illness, he was forced to sleep in a straight-back chair to breathe comfortably. On those nights, he played his guitar until he fell asleep holding it, a habit that lasted his whole life.
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He released a jaw-dropping 88 studio albums, 53 compilation albums, and singles, from country to jazz to folk to numerous other genres in-between. He wooed listeners from generation to generation with his electric speed, melodic playing, and unique finger-picking guitar style. Atkins took that style and, over 50 years, made it his own. Atkins had hundreds of brilliant songs in his repertoire. Many of the songs he recorded are covers, but he picked them in a way no one else could. Here are 10 of the best in no particular order.
The constant boom-chick of his right-hand thumb, the slides and bends, and the simple but badass lead melody all make it a force to be reckoned with. Tommy Emmanuel commonly covers this song in live performances. The song was originally written by John D. Wildwood Flower Wildwood Flower is just a beautiful piece of music to listen to.
Watch closely as Chet switches from softly playing chords to subtly ripping it up. The Entertainer Chet loved to play rags. They are, by far, some of the best Atkins songs to listen to. The Entertainer is a classic piano rag written by Scott Joplin. Here, he beautifully plays the masterpiece Ava Maria, by Austrian classical composer Schubert. Michelle Chet loved The Beatles. The album was nominated for Best Instrumental Recording at the Grammy awards. The sleeve features liner notes by George Harrison.
This track features wicked lead guitar by Steve Lukather Toto. Borsalino Borsalino is nothing less than a guitar masterpiece. Close your eyes, sway along with the baseline and lead melody and allow it to lull you into a blissful state.
It was composed by Claude Bolling and first released in Watching them play live, it was easy to see their respect and affection for each other as they exchange solos. The lullaby-of-a-song was written by Isham Jones, with lyrics by Gus Khan, and was published in The track is on the album Me and My Guitar. The song was written by the American surf-rock band The Vultures. Which of the above songs is your favorite? Let us know in the comment box below.
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