Joe Robinson

Discussion of history's greatest guitar player.

Re: Joe Robinson

Postby RandeDager » Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:13 pm

Hi Phil,

My reason for wondering if there were any problems between Joe & Tommy is that I've been "behind the scenes" many times in situations like this and it wouldn't be that unusual. I agree wholeheartedly that there is no reason to assume any conflict based upon a single interview lacking any mention of Tommy's name, but you are talking about reality rather than perception. The reality is that Joe is good enough to stand on his own merit, but at this stage in his career it is much more customary to "play the game" and create a perception and "kiss the right feet" to get places. Climbing the ladder of fame requires a lot of networking and depending on others more established to help to make it all possible. Look what "American Idol" has done for people who were "superstars" only in their own communities.

My nature is to be against all of that and that's probably why I myself haven't gotten any further than I have. I'm a terrible self-marketer but anything significant that I've done has been as a result of being helped by someone else. Through my association with "those who have made it", both in acting and in music, I've learned over the years that they have stood on the shoulders of others who are successful. It turns my stomach to know that pure talent isn't enough and that all of these "political games" have to be played along the way, but that's the way the world is. Very talented people remain undiscovered by avoiding all of this.

But don't get me wrong, I agree that Joe Robinson SHOULD be able to make it purely on his own merits and God given gifts.
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Re: Joe Robinson

Postby Tony Enamel » Wed May 04, 2011 3:04 pm

Phil Owens wrote:A (related?) aside: The "Tommy-Clone" moniker really irks me; It sounds like a slight. (Does anyone ever say Chet-Clone or Jerry-Clone or Merle-clone?) Somehow it's honorable to honor Chet, but the young Tommy followers need to hurry up and "find their own style." These kids who love to play guitar have found (arguably) the greatest living influence. Why should/would they not want to emulate him? It does not mean they are trying to be just like him. Give them a few years and they will discover others who inspire them in new directions - as Joe has done.


I fully second the first part of your post (which I didn't quote here) and I think we almost agree about the statement above.

Personally, I can hardly play guitar myself and can't play fingerstyle at all. Therefore I appreciate everybody who overcomes all the difficulties to learn this style. The best thing they can do is learning from the best and by doing so keeping up the tradition of songs and techniques and showing their respect for it. Especially young people will make quick progress if they have an idol in music to follow. There's nothing wrong in playing "Windy & Warm" or "I'll See You In My Dreams" or "Mombasa" or "Green Thumb" note by note. I love to hear this stuff myself.

But if we're looking for the next link in the chain or people want to continue the tradition, it's not enough to repeat the music from the past alone, in my opinion. They have to pick it up and find their own way. That's what I meant with the term "Tommy clone": I've seen people looking for wider recognition and other people praising them, although they had "just" played what Chet and Merle and Jerry and Tommy or others did before and mostly did better. It's not enough, when we're looking for quality. They need to go beyond that.

I never met Chet and cannot claim to know what he would have thought about this. But if I look at the people whom he had awarded with a CGP award: These are all people who did just that, picking up the tradition and adding something to it.

That's what I admire the most.


If it ain't got the groove, the bodies won't move.
Tony Enamel
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