Twenty-one Lessons

Twenty-one Lessons

Not everyone should take music lessons. There are some that have a hole in their bucket, like me. Mother thought it would be nice if one of her children learned how to play the Hawaiian guitar. Island music was popular back in the days before World War II. She picked the wrong kid, me.

There had been an ad in the newspaper announcing a new music program coming to town. They promised to teach anyone how to play the Hawaiian guitar in twenty-five easy lessons at only two dollars each. They would provide a student guitar, picks, and slide bar as well as the sheet music. What a deal! Mother signed me up. This was before I knew how tone deaf I really was. It turned out that my singing ability was so poor that our dog, Banjo, wouldn't even howl. He just hid in the corner. But I was willing to try.

There were two classes of six students each. We didn't need to learn how to read notes, they said. There was a better method of learning to play the Hawaiian guitar, they said. We would be able to play a tune after our first lesson, they said. The Oahu Method was the way to go, they said. What they said was all wrong. None of us learned a thing except that we weren't cut out to play the Hawaiian guitar. In class, we were to play through the selected song together. Banjo wouldn't have been able to handle that. The teacher said we were doing fine.

The Oahu Method of playing the guitar didn't rely on a musical clef or notes on a printed page. Oh no, numerals would do the trick. The strings were the open spaces between the lines on the paper. In those spaces, instead of notes, numbers were placed to correspond to the strings to be played. Numbers were placed at each fret on the guitar, starting with “1” at the first fret. Sounds simple enough. The tempo of the piece to be played was mostly up to the player. We tapped our feet in unison and started on the teacher's signal. What key was it in? Not important, since the frets were numbered to correspond to the notes. We never learned to play chords. Sharps and flats? We were not to worry about them either. After all, the lessons were only two dollars each. What more would we need?

To tune our guitar we used a very simple method. I never did master it. We were to place the bar on a certain fret and play the two adjacent strings, adjusting the tension on the open string until they sounded alike. That was asking a lot from a tone deaf person like me. We were to continue across the strings, tuning the open string to correspond to the previous one with the bar on it. Problems arose immediately. How was I to know if the base string (the one closest to me) was in tune or not. I tried, the good Lord knows I tried. A strum across the strings of my guitar was not melodious, but grating on the nerves. Some people are not cut out to play.

I took twenty-one lessons on the Hawaiian guitar using the Oahu Method. My favorite song was “Over the Waves.” It was hymn, but I didn't know that. I never once played it all the way through. My tempo was jerky since I needed to look up at the numbers on the sheet music, then down at my guitar to play that note. It was a pitiful sight. No one ever asked me to play the second time.

I would have taken all the lessons of the course, but the two music teachers ran off together with the funds, leaving us holding the bag. My guitar lay in a closet for a number of years. I couldn't even give it away.

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Events

College & Career Fair

Thursday, April 18, 2019 - 12:00
Union County High School

We are having a College & Career Fair at Union County High School on April 18th from noon until 3pm. This is not only for the high school students it is for the community too. I have a flyer that I can send to you with all of the information.

Wine and Design

Thursday, April 18, 2019 - 18:00

This month, join us for a fun Wine and Design event.
During this class, get ready for Easter by painting and crafting a bunny wine bottle and a flower sign. The class is only
$25 and includes all the materials needed as well as a glass
of wine. Tickets must be purchased in advance by calling The Winery at (865)745-2902.

Need A Ride To Church

Sunday, April 21, 2019 - 10:00
Need A Ride To Church

Fellowship Christian Church located at 746 Tazewell Pike Luttrell TN 37779 will pickup anyone in the local area needing a ride to church. Call Sam at 865-607-3741 to schedule a ride.

Worship Services

Sunday School 10:00 AM
Sunday Worship Service 11:00 A.M
Sunday Evening Service 6:30 P.M
Wednesday Service 7:00 P.M

Obituary

Samuel Charles Talbott II

Samuel Charles Talbott II age 42 passed away unexpectedly Monday morning April 15, 2019. Preceded in death by father, Samuel Charles Talbott; daughter, Kaylie Talbott. He is survived by mother, Patty Talbott (Danny Baker); son, Hayden Bailey; sister, Lisa Armentrout; nieces, Alyssa Hawkins (Brandon) and Abby Armentrout; great-nephew, Dalton Hawkins; special friend, Tandy Vanzant; many aunts, uncles, and cousins. Sammy was a graduate of Horace Maynard High School. Like his father, he never met a stranger and made friends everywhere he went.

Eastridge, Doris Ann

Doris Ann Eastridge – age 73 of New Tazewell, passed away peacefully at her home on April 15, 2019. She was a member of Carr’s Branch Missionary Baptist Church. Doris was retired from the Claiborne County School System.

Curits E. (Kurt) Russell, II

Curtis E. (Kurt) Russell, II-age 44 of Knoxville passed away suddenly Sunday, April 14, 2019 at his home. Kurt was a member of Beaver Dam Baptist Church attending First Comforter Church. He was a 1992 graduate of Halls High School. He loved playing the guitar; singing and recording at Songwriters Studio. Many years he took guitar lessons from Ed Wing and voice lessons from Terri McClellan. His dad taught him to enjoy U. T. Football at an early age. He loved life, his family and friends.

Thurman "Truman" E. Davis

Thurman Eugene Davis-age 70 of Knoxville, known as T.D. to his friends went home to be with the Lord Sunday morning, April 14, 2019 at Tennova North Medical Center. Thurman proudly served his country in the Army 1969 – 1975. Preceded in death by his loving wife, Susan Diane Davis; parents, Cody and Nettie Davis; brothers, Hubert, Carlos, R. V., Hobert and Hessie Davis; sister, Margie Davis.

Ray Buckner

Ray Edward Buckner-age 80 of Maynardville passed away Sunday morning, April 14, 2019 at Willow Ridge Center. Preceded in death by father, Frank Buckner; mother, Susie Waggoner Buckner; brothers, Frank Buckner, Jr.; Paris Kitts; sister, Mildred Kitts Loy.

Survivors: sons, Jeff Kitts of Maynardville; Tim Kitts of Knoxville; daughter, Brenda Kitts of Knoxville; brother, Billy (Todd) Buckner of Maynardville; sister, Jean Fields of Knoxville. Several nieces and nephews.

Helen Arnold

Attoway Helen Arnold-age 76 of Washburn passed away Wednesday morning, April 10, 2019 at Morristown-Hamblen Hospital. She was born June 15, 1942 the daughter of the late John and Bessie Hensley and is also preceded in death by son, Richard Arnold and grandson, Jaylynn Singleton.

Iva Geraldine (Gerry) Tipton

Iva Geraldine (Gerry) Tipton, age 84, Corryton, TN went home to be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Friday, April 12, 2019. She was a faithful member of Ridgeview Heights Baptist Church. She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Preceded in death by parents Fred and Bonnie Webber, brothers Lawrence and Briscoe Webber, sister Mary Lett and son-in-law Steve Griffith.

Von C. Merritt

Von C Merritt went to be with his Savior April 12, 2019. He was a member of Fountain City United Methodist Church. Preceded in death by parents George and Hazel Merritt, and Brother Ron Merritt. Survived by wife Mary Ann Merritt, brothers and sisters-in-law Jim and Delsie Merritt, Al and June Merritt, sisters and brothers-in-law Marie and Jack Rhyne, Janice and Bob Pendergrass, Almeda and Steve Lewis, and sister-in-law Maudella Merritt. The family will receive friends from 5:30 - 7:30 pm on Monday, April 15, 2019 at Mynatt Funeral Home Halls Chapel.

Pauline "Polly" Lucille Hodson Smith

Pauline “Polly” Lucille Hodson Smith age 68 of Knoxville passed away on Friday April 12, 2019, surrounded by her family. Polly retired from First Tennessee Bank after 30 years of service. She spent her retirement years serving as a teacher for the Parents Day Out program at Union Baptist Church and also enjoyed working for Purple Plum Estate Sales, when not at work she loved spending time with her Terry Point Campground family. Preceded in death by her parents, Ralph and Helen Hodson; brother Dennis Hodson.

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