Australian Joe Robinson is already a world-class virtuoso guitarist and singer-songwriter at age 26. He's known for injecting a unique fusion of rock, blues, R&B and jazz into a sound that is entirely his own.
Displaying his virtuosity on electric as well as acoustic guitar, Robinson was voted Best New Talent in the Guitar Player Readers' Poll and named one of Australian Guitar Magazine's Top 50 Best Guitarists.
"Joe Robinson's talent is overwhelming. Next to Tommy Emmanuel, Joe is the finest finger-picking guitar player out there to my knowledge. He's so young to be so good," says Mike Dougher, entertainment coordinator of Songbirds Guitar Museum. Robinson will stop in Songbirds North on Wednesday, Jan. 22, for a show.
Robinson started playing guitar at age 9, and when he quickly outpaced his guitar instructor, began educating himself via the internet. By 11, he was a touring guitarist and at 13, he won the Australian National Songwriting Competition.
Within a couple of years he was touring regularly and sharing stages with artists such as Tommy and Phil Emmanuel, both of whom served as mentors. When 16-year-old Robinson burned through a medley of "Day Tripper" and "Lady Madonna" in 2008 in the opening round of the nationally broadcast "Australia's Got Talent" television series competition, the entire house—including the judges—gave him a standing ovation. He went on to win $250,000 with his take on Tommy Emmanuel's arrangement of "Classical Gas."
Robinson's talents were further recognized by Guitar Player magazine as part of a cover story entitled "Youthquake 2017: Ten Mind-Blowing Young Guitarists." In the article, Guitar Player observes Robinson is "equally mind-blowing as an acoustic fingerpicker and electric soloist his YouTube videos display an astounding combination of taste, speed, cagey phrasing, and a clear, articulate and sparkling tone."
If you go
› Where: Songbirds Guitar Museum, 35 Station St. (South), 41 Station St. (North)
› For more information: 423-531-2473
AN EVENING WITH KELLER WILLIAMS
› When: 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 16 (S)
› Admission: $15
STAIRWAY TO ZEPPELIN
› When: 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 17 (S)
› Admission: $15 in advance, $20 day of show
ALEX WILLIAMS BAND
› When: 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18 (N)
› Admission: $15
LENOX HILLS WITH DRUMMING BIRD AND MEGAN KERR
› When: 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18 (S)
› Admission: $10 in advance, $12 day of show
AN EVENING WITH YARN
› When: 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 21 (N)
› Admission: $15 in advance, $18 day of show
AN EVENING WITH JOE ROBINSON
› When: 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22 (N)
› Admission: $20 in advance, $25 day of show