Don Jones

The tunes on "My Back Yard" have a play me again quality. It comes from Don Jones' fluid and lilting touch on the guitar, to be sure, but more from the engaging melodies he writes, and the consistently pleasing tone colors he coaxes from both steel and nylon string guitars. His tunes have a distinction of sounding fresh and new, but also give the feeling that they've been with you for a long time.

Many of the players/composers who have made solo guitar records in recent times create their compositions using patterns of notes, probably because flashy note patterns are easily discovered on the guitar. But Don is one of the few who realizes that it's a good melody and solid song structure, well rendered, which give a tune it's life and that mere note patterns and licks are soon forgotten by the listener.

And to make extra sure that he won't be on the same path as nearly every other guitar player on the earth, Don plays the guitar upside down! He says that everyone in his family learned to play the guitar backward like that, and it's not a case of also being left-handed. Among the hurdles imposed by this idea is a major one, almost all guitar books and lessons out there are nearly useless to a person who plays the guitar reversed like that. But instead of being hindered by this strange geometry, Don's style has been surprisingly nurtured by it. He's had to figure out unique fingerings for every chord he knows and has found new playing approaches that would not be apparent to a "normal" guitar player. Rather than holding him back, these challenges have made his guitar style quite unique.

But all of that is just "guitar talk". The happy musical result is here for anyone to enjoy. You will hear a melancholy lullaby called "Blue Jeans At Church", the engaging bossa nova of "Viscaya", the ragtimey kick of "Tailwagger", a latin-tinged music box like quality of "Guava Grove", a wistful duet with himself titled "Five A.M.", the jazzy Jerry Reed influenced counterpoint of "Sneaker" and unabashed love ballads like "Snow Angel" and "Afterthought". There's something for everyone who likes the rich sound of acoustic guitar played with verve and flow. After this disc has spun around the CD player a few times, you will find yourself humming something unexpected on the way to work. These tunes will grab you like that.

Pat Kirtley, 1998

  • 1997 Winner "Home of the Legends" International Thumbpicking Championship
  • 1997 Winner "Home of the Legends" International Freestyle Guitar Championship
  • 1998 Winner National Thumbpicking Championship
  • 1998-99 Chet Atkins Appreciation Society Convention Showcase Performer
  • 1998 Compact Disc Release: "My Backyard", 18 Original Acoustic Guitar Solos



My Back Yard

  1. Rainwalk 1:47
  2. Inertia 2:17
  3. Blue Jeans At Church 3:02
  4. Watercourse 3:37
  5. Front Porch Dreams 3:21
  6. Catskill Rag 2:00
  7. Over & Over Again 2:45
  8. Viscaya 2:42
  9. Belmont 2:23
  10. Seadrift 4:13
  11. Stones River Blues 2:20
  12. Afterthought 2:44
  13. Guava Grove 2:44
  14. Tailwagger 2:10
  15. Five A.M. (Judy's Song) 3:09
  16. Sneaker 2:50
  17. Snow Angel 3:06
  18. Hot Pursuit 2:04


To order send check or money order for $16 (CD) or $11 (Cassette) to:

Don Jones
114 Rockwood Terrace
Gallatin, TN 37066.

or call (615) 451-1519