The story goes something like this: I admired the Harmony Rocket guitar in the window at Blue Eagle Music in Athens, Ohio for at least a couple months. It was a red sunburst with a white pick guard, a personal favorite. The combination is rare too, so I’m always excited when I see a guitar with such a make. I ended up taking the picture below of the guitar and posting it online, with the following caption:
“Someone needs to buy this beautiful vintage Harmony guitar from Blue Eagle music in Athens, Ohio because I can’t afford it, and its mere presence is torturing.”
I was hoping someone would actually buy it so I wouldn’t have to look at it anymore. Some friends commented that they too had been admiring the guitar for some time. Later in the evening I got online and saw I had a message from my close childhood friend Mark, who now lives in Seattle, which read:
“I STRONGLY suggest you PHYSICALLY go back down to Blue Eagle and make sure that they didn’t already set that guitar aside for you.
With my mind racing, I explained to my wife that I had to go down to Blue Eagle Music right now. I drove down to the store to find the guitar was no longer in the window! I told Frank, the owner, that I received a cryptic message from my friend about the Harmony guitar. Frank replied, “You’ve got a really nice friend.” Well, luck would have it that my friend Mark saw my post, called the store and paid for the guitar over the phone, instructing them to set it aside for me.
I sat down in the store and played the guitar for a while. It plays great. I chatted with Frank for a little while about this incredible gift. As I left I called my friend and thanked him. There’s wasn’t much else to say. We caught up a little, and exchanged some inside jokes. Mark hung out with my brother and I growing up. He was at our house a lot. We would all hang out in our basement bedroom mocking what was on TV, telling inside jokes, occasionally playing music, and laughing a lot. We all hang out still today if we are all back home in Dayton during holidays or when my band Southeast Engine has been out on the West coast.
Today, I’m still in awe of such a wonderful gift. I’m a little bit in disbelief that the guitar belongs to me. I feel a sense of responsibility to try to make something great with it. That’s the only way I know how to pay Mark back for his generosity. Anyway, I want to thank Mark once again for being my own personal Patron Saint of the Arts. Thanks Mark!