The Inspiration of Pat Guadagno
By Richard Elliott - April 18, 2009
This past week, my wife and I went with a close friend to see Pat Guadagno
and Richard Blackwell play at Mattison Park
in Asbury Park, NJ. We entered the recently opened Martini bar and restaurant and was welcomed by the low lit ambiance of the place. It felt like an upscale New York restaurant, quite a departure from the original purpose of the bank building that was reborn to house a new Asbury Park hot spot.
There were maybe twenty people in the bar and a table of folks enjoying dinner in the back. I immediately recognized the Bose personal audio system in the back of the lounge/bar area. I have one of these great systems in my home. We bought it for parties so our musician friends could just come over and plug in. Or, at least that's how I explained the purchase to my wife. The husbands know what I mean. I also use it for my own guitar playing, of course. I'm kidding. My wife supports my music.
Little did we know what we were about to experience when Pat and Richard came in and stopped over to say hello. What nice people.
As Pat and Richard began to play, the room filled with music. I wasn't sure if Pat came in without any shoes, but I noticed he was not wearing any while he was playing. The entire room turned to listen as Pat began to play his guitar like it was born attached to his hands. His voice filled the room with a unique and almost sorrowful vibrato. It immediately touched a chord. The transitions from song to song were seamless. His right hand moved like lightening across the strings of his Taylor guitar
with effortless speed as he moved up and down the fret board. I paid particular attention as I'm trying to become a better guitar player myself, although in a totally different league. Pat added a unique quality to each song from Johnny Cash to his own artistic creations. They were perfectly matched as Richard laid the beat, or was it Pat, we couldn't tell as they were so perfectly in tune with each other.
He inspired me to get back to practicing. We asked Pat on a break if he gave guitar lessons. Unfortunately not, but we will definitely go to see him play again. He is working on a new CD and we can't wait to get a hold of it.
Go see him. Watch his right hand move. Bring someone special. Listen and enjoy a relaxing evening. It's amazing. We definitely want more of these fine artists.