Vince Gill might be the best guitar player out there who gets left out of “best guitarist” conversations. This despite his turning down a gig in Dire Straits, earning five Grammys for instrumentals (out of his 20 total), and being versatile enough to play alongside guys like Chet Atkins, Eric Clapton, and Joe Bonamassa. Hell, the guy even sat in with Alice Cooper recently.
Guitar Slinger is not a self-indulgent guitar-nut record, however, which will make sense to long-time fans drawn to Gill’s reserved style. Gill has always served the song first.
Artists Amy Grant and Vince Gill will be presented with The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee’s 18th annual Joe Kraft Humanitarian Award on Nov. 1. The award honors the duo’s unmatched philanthropic spirit.
“As incredible as their professional success has been and as much as their words and music have impacted our lives, Amy and Vince’s philanthropic support for causes and people in need typifies the size of their hearts. They have dedicated themselves to helping others with a creative and caring fervor as inspirational as any other this community has ever enjoyed,” said Ellen Lehman, president of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.
“One of these things is not like the other,” sang Zac Brown, almost under his breath. He was referring to himself, humbled as he was to find himself here Tuesday night (Sept. 13) in the company of certifiable legends at a benefit for Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
In actuality, none of these things was quite like the other on Tuesday’s bill — with the possible coupled exception of Vince Gill and Emmylou Harris, fellow Hall of Famers and friends of 35 years. Both have been part of the lineup for all three years these All for the Hall fundraising concerts have been in existence in Los Angeles, with Gill always playing the earthy host and Harris as his trusty, ethereal sidekick.
Vince Gill has a list of accolades spanning far and wide, including 20 Grammys, 18 CMA awards and induction into both the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Country Music Hall of Fame. Vince tells Boston.com that the Hall of Fame honor serves as motivation when it comes to his music.
“Some of my greatest heroes are songwriters, and so with getting inducted into the Hall of Fame, I feel motivated beyond even my expectations,’’ Vince said. “I feel like ‘OK, they’ve [given me] that, now go earn it.’’’
Vince is gearing up to release his new album, Guitar Slinger, on October 25. The album, his first new music since 2006, is a collection of songs ranging from traditional country sounds to a track that channels the Beatles in the harmonies. According to Vince, it is some of his best work yet.
“I felt like my whole life I’ve held back,’’ Vince said. “And in my defense, [I was] trying to be subtle. I think there’s always been a side of me that was trying to be the hip, cool, and groovy musician that said ‘Don’t overdo it, don’t show off too much.’’’
Songwriter Bob DiPiero agrees that Vince is producing his best music yet. “Vince is probably better than he was,’’ Bob said to Boston.com. “He’s loose from the radio funnel that songs have to sound a certain way in order for them to break out onto a Top 20 list. He’s free from the tyranny, so he’s free to be who he really is. He’s free to explore. His playing, if possible, is better than ever.’’
Vince recently celebrated his 20th year as a member of the Grand Ole Opry and is scheduled to perform as part of the Country Music Hall of Fame’s All for the Hall benefit in Los Angeles on September 13.
Hall of Fame country star free to explore styles
Sarah Rodman – Boston.com
Vince Gill, famously, loves to play golf. So it’s not hard to imagine that one of the youngest-ever inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame might hit the links and let himself go a little.
But that isn’t Gill’s style. In fact, that 2007 accolade spurred the justly acclaimed country singer-songwriter-guitarist to let himself go in another way: creatively.
“Some of my greatest heroes are songwriters, and so with getting inducted into the Hall of Fame, I feel motivated beyond even my expectations,’’ said Gill recently, on the phone from the home he shares in Nashville with his wife, Christian-pop singer Amy Grant, and their children. “I feel like ‘OK, they’ve [given me] that, now go earn it.’ ’’
What do you do if you’re a comedian with a garage full of props, a phone full of country music stars numbers, and an over-active imagination? Well if you’re Henry Cho, you put on a show! After mis- dialing a few numbers, getting migraine inducing singing lessons from a few famous friends, and receiving questionable advice from his fellow comedian pals — The Henry Cho Show was born! Henry and friends gaze back out of the fishbowl with a sideways look at themselves, country music, and southern life in this unpredictable, but always funny special. The Henry Cho Show – all you can laugh comedy, whether you want it or not. Don’t miss Vince Gill on the premiere episode on September 8th at 8:00 PM ET. more!