Rockin' The Country with Joe Don Rooney: The Benefits of Being a Singing Guitarist

This video is bonus content related to the May 2014 issue of Guitar World. For the full range of interviews, features, tabs and more, pick up the new issue on newsstands now or at the Guitar World Online Store.

As I mentioned back in my second column [August 2013], I grew up in Oklahoma and started playing guitar at a young age, thanks to my dad, who was a fine guitarist and working musician who encouraged and inspired me to take up the instrument.

He also taught me some great lessons and gave me invaluable opportunities to go onstage and play with him in at his gigs. My dad was also a very good singer and inspired and encouraged me to try singing too, which I eventually did, but not until I was around 16 or 17.

I believe that pursuit turned out to have a huge, positive impact on my development and career as a musician, and this month I’d like to talk about some of the benefits of being a guitarist who also sings.

At first, I was insecure about my vocal abilities and would sing only in private, where no one else could hear me. As I gained confidence in my voice and pitch control, around the time I was in high school, I started to sing with and in front of others in group settings, which boosted my confidence and made me want to sing out more.

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