Jimmy Thackery comes full circle for Winter Park performance
May 13, 2009
When Jimmy Thackery takes the stage on Saturday, it will be exactly seven years since he played the first show of the Grand County Blues Society. He was my favorite guitarist of all time, said GCBS founder John Catt. I had been his friend for several years and he happened to be touring in the area. The GCBS didn’t have any funds at the time, so I put the money up personally and sold 95 tickets on short notice.Then, Dan at (Smokin’) Moe’s saw how cool it was and chipped in after the fact. So, the blues shows were born and Moe’s was the home. Since then, the Grand County Blues Society has hosted 130 shows at Smokin’ Moe’s.Thackery remembers that first show well. I’d know John for a while and I could see him getting the bug. I could see it beginning to bite him, Thackery said. My wife did a blues fest in Arkansas and he came. And that was all she wrote. I could see it in his eyes. He wanted to do shows. He asked me to play and I said, ‘let’s rock this thing.’The Blues Society now hosts shows and a large-scale summer blues festival in downtown Winter Park. Its members also work to bring music to local youth. It’s progressing upward, Thackery said. I couldn’t be happier for him.Thackery has been playing professionally for four decades. It decided to get serious in 1966 and by 1968 I was actually receiving money for making noise, he said. In all those years on the road and on stage, it never gets old, he said. I like to say, if you think you’ve finished growing as a musician, you have.John Catt is excited to bring Thackery back to kick off another year of the Grand County Blues Society. You will hardly ever see anyone in Thackery’s class as a guitarist, Catt said. He can play all the styles and often does. If you have never seen Jimmy on stage, this will be a great chance. If you like guitar at all, you will be instantly impressed. He likes to take a room over from the first notes.