Thursday, April 1, 2010

Music Review: Doyle Dykes

Although Doyle Dykes is among the ranks of country music’s greatest legends such as Chet Atkins, Roy Acuff and Grandpa Jones, his name is virtually unknown outside the inner circle of Opry musicians. It could be that he is a generation behind and the genre has lost it’s luster amidst “new country”. However, if you love the “old” stuff or if you are a guitar player of any style, you can’t miss this living legend. His quirky presence and unique personal style and technical “innovations” landed Doyle on the same stage as the best of the best. Seeing Doyle Dykes live can be the equivalent in inspiration to a triple shot cappuccino on a groggy Monday morning! And for those who couldn’t imagine themselves sitting through 2 hours of guitar pickin’, he’s an inspiration to hone any craft to near perfection and then offer it up as a gift to both your Creator and those in the audience of your life.

Almost exactly a year past, a local guitar player I deeply respect told me that there was a guy coming to town to play a show at a local music shop and that I didn’t want to miss it. He referred to him as one of the greatest fingerpickers alive today. He talked me out of my reluctancy to spend another night away from the family. This week I talked a few other guys into the same proposition when Doyle made his annual trek into our small Alabama town. Unless out of my control, I will never again miss an opportunity to see Doyle burn up his orange Taylor and give his craft away to those lucky few packed into that guitar filled storefront tapping their toes and vibrantly shouting for more. I’m thankful for capitalism because guitar sales is what motivates the Taylor company to send Doyle out to sing the praises of the company that changed the face of the instrument. It has allowed me to glean from the edges one of the greatest experiences of my life two different times now.

Don’t get me wrong, I love some good “old country” style fingerpikin’, but that’s not what motivates me to spend a night with Doyle. It’s his unswerving commitment to share with the world his God-given and self-nurtured gift. And Doyle never takes the stage without both thanking and honoring his Creator for imparting and entrusting him with an almost super-human ability.

My buddy Chris and I had a chance to briefly chat with Doyle after the show and we discussed identifying and developing unique gifts for the purpose of giving them away to others and honoring God with the fruit. Another friend of mine aks the question, “What do you hold in your hand right now that can be shared?” That’s the question that haunts me both times I’ve seen Doyle sharing his craft. God gives us gifts that no one else can give us. Whether that gift has arisen from experience or natural talent is not the issue. The question is, “ Have I done everything I can do to nurture and share that gift?”

So be inspired by the following video. Identify what you “hold in your hand” and go nurture it. While you’re at it, share whenever you can. As we take little opportunities to share, God will open our eyes to possibility!

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