Joe Bonamassa Recalls The Time He Stopped Playing Guitar
Successful blues-rock guitarist and singer Joe Bonamassa opened up about the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on his music during a recent interview with Music Radar. Apparently, the musician stopped playing guitar during lockdowns because he had no motivation without an audience and all the ambiguity.
As many of you might know, Joe Bonamassa started playing guitar at the very young age of four, and he had a band named Smokin’ Joe Bonamassa when he was 12 years old. The young musician performed around western New York and Pennsylvania on weekends and went to school on weekdays.
Bonamassa opened for B.B. King at approximately 20 shows in 1989 when he was only 12. It was a sign that he was destined to do great things in his music career, and he lived up to his reputation for the past decades. In the last 13 years, the guitarist has put out 15 solo albums, 11 of which have reached No. 1 on the Billboard Blues charts.
Although guitar playing is a significant portion of his life, Joe Bonamassa recently opened up about his lack of enthusiasm for playing during an interview. Apparently, the musician questioned why he played guitar for all those years during coronavirus lockdowns, which was demoralizing.
In addition to this, Bonamassa realized how he had no control over his job due to the COVID-19 restrictions. As he was reminded of that fact on a daily basis, he just gave up on playing guitar, and it’ll take some time for him to get back to normal since it has been too long.
During the interview, Bonamassa said:
“Well, here’s the perspective: as we are having this conversation, I have a guitar in my hand, and I am playing because I have a reason. I am sitting in with a friend of mine in New York City in about six or seven hours. I have a reason to pick up the guitar. Like, if this was just a regular Wednesday, and look around, I live in a house of guitars, would pick up the guitar for a moment and then go, ‘Oh, there’s a ladybug on the wall.’ Why am I doing this?
I’m telling you, from my perspective, it was demoralizing because it reminded you of what you did for a living, and you have no control over the fact that you cannot do that. It was demoralizing to be reminded of that every day, so I just stopped playing. I didn’t really play much. Ultimately, it’s going to take a minute for a lot of people to get back into real road shape just because they have been off it for so long.”
It appears that Joe Bonamassa experienced something similar with many other artists. Especially last year, numerous musicians struggled with their careers since they couldn’t arrange shows or get in the studio. Fortunately, the ease of restrictions has allowed musicians to get back on track and do what they love most.