Above: Heres a tasty clip of Tommy shredding some blues

Last night I happened to come upon two tickets to see a guitar player named Tommy Emmanuel perform at the Smothers Theater on Pepperdine’s Campus.  I was hesitant at first to accept the tickets because I did not think this was going to necessarily going to be my type of music.

I did a quick google search on “Tommy Emmanuel” to find out what what kind music he played and to get short bio about who exactly he was.  After a short read on Wikipedia, I thought I had it pretty much figured out.  I said to myself, “He’s an 60 year old Australian guitarist who plays advanced finger styling acoustic and was nominated for 2 Grammy Awards but did not win.”

“That is pretty cool,” I said, but still my interest wasn’t all the way peaked.

I was told if I didn’t take the tickets they were going to waste so I took them home with me.  At the very least I could pass them on to my dad who is a lifetime guitar player and guitar aficionado.

After work that evening I talked to my dad and asked him if he had ever heard of this guy “Tommy Emmanuel,” to which he replied, “Of course, why do you ask?”

Photo of Tommy Emmanuel Performing at Soave Guitar Festival in 2010
Photo of Tommy Emmanuel Performing at Soave Guitar Festival in 2010

I told him while holding up two printed out tickets, “I came up on two tickets to see him perform tonight at Smothers and was seeing if you’re interested.”

From there he sat up from his comfy position on the couch and looked at me with wide eyes and said, “Let me see those tickets.”

He went on to explain to me that Tommy Emmanuel is considered one of the best guitar players in the world and that his command of the instrument is almost second to none.

His enthusiasm got me excited for the show and we went later that night.  And let me tell you, I am GLAD I did.

In terms of being a master of the craft, this was the best performance I have ever seen.  The speed in which he plays and the level of difficulty of the music was like nothing I’ve ever seen.  It really sounds like two or three guitars are being played at one time.  At one point in between songs a fan shouted out, “My ears can’t listen that fast,” to which Emmanuel replied, “Well I’m just getting started.”


It was not just the technical stuff that was great, but he was a true performer.  He had great vocals, told some great stories, and was quite funny as well.

In the end, I feel really fortunate those tickets landed in my lap.  It was the kind of show where you leave saying, “Wow, now thats real talent.”

He is playing another shower tonight at Smothers again and there are still a few tickets available.  I suggest to anyone reading this to hop on those tickets!

click here to see where to buy tickets for Wednesday night’s show

By Ryan Sarmiento | Content Manager