October 30, 2007

Gareth Pearson

It isn't every day that a young guitarist, after playing for merely two years, gets to open for an internationally acclaimed artist like Tommy Emmanuel.

Such is the situation Gareth Pearson found himself in at the ripe old age of 16!

Pearson, of Cwmbran, South Wales, had developed Osgood Shattler Syndrome in his knees, putting to end a promising soccer career. One day, while Gareth was moping around the house, his father put on a video of Tommy Emmanuel for him to watch. At that instant, he knew where he wanted to put his time and energy. His dad bought him a guitar, and Gareth began to digest music at a furious rate, focusing on Chet Atkins, Jerry Reed, Merle Travis - and of course, Tommy Emmanuel.
Within two years, he was a force to be reckoned with, and today, at 19, he is touring around the world.

Labeled by many as a prodigy, Pearson rejects that assertion:

"Practice, practice and practice. It's really down to hard work. I am forever searching for that groove that sets Tommy apart from any other player out there. Then there is the passion."

"I have had no formal music training and to say that I "excel at playing by ear" would be making out that I was gifted. It mainly comes down to hard work, although the more I play and listen, the easier it is to understand and hear what is going on."

Check out Gareth's promotional video from 2006:

And a live clip from a concert in 2006, supporting Tommy Emmanuel:

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