Readers of this newsletter may remember the young girl we see carrying Charlie Waller's spare guitar during The Country Gentlemen's sequence
(check Vol. I, #1 in our newsletter archives)
. Mike Emerson wrote in to identify her as Janet Kirby. Well, Janet grew up and is now known by her professional name, Janet Martin. We asked her to share her memories of that festival.
"It was a very influential time in my life at Camp Springs. I was just starting to learn how to play, and flat-picking was taught to me by Charlie Waller. I remember wanting to “jam” with the adults at the late night jam sessions, but because I was a kid and so young, it never really happened. I used to watch & listen in awe.
I met all of those players in The Country Gentlemen during that time including Don Reno & Red Smiley (my 1st guitar my Mom bought from Red Smiley) Eddie Adcock, Wendy Thatcher to name a few, and so many more. Wendy Thatcher was influential in many ways because she was one of the few woman players at the time. She actually taught me how to play “Deep River Blues” by Doc Watson."
Janet has shared the stage with a wide array of musicians throughout her expansive career, including John Prine, Warren Zeon, Leon Russell, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Aaron Neville. She has written over 40 songs and released nine CDs, including her most recent one, a solo CD titled "Eve Sessions." She divides her live performances between the US and Europe. I'd say her mother made a good investment on that Red Smiley guitar.