Reverb: Can you tell us about your very first guitar and the instrument that you dreamed of owning when you were growing up?
“Music was such a large part of our whole family. All of my mama’s people were musical. They all played some sort of musical instrument. Of course, I took my music real serious, and I was always plucking along on somebody’s instrument — whatever they would leave lying around or whenever my family would come. But I always loved the guitar.
“I had two uncles who played — Uncle Bill, who helped me get into the business, and Uncle Lewis, who was also a great guitar player. He had this little Martin guitar that I loved, so when he saw how serious I was about my music, he gave me his little Martin guitar. It was my treasure.”
“When I left home at 18, I put it in the loft because it was beat up. My plan was always to — when I got money, when I got rich and famous — have it fixed up. But the loft burned out of our house, and burned up my guitar, so I only have the neck of that one. But I have collected little Martin guitars all through the years. I have some classic little guitars, especially the Martins, the baby Martins.”