Start Young, Work Hard, Find A Mentor and Never Quit!

I just finished dinner with my 11-year-old daughter.

During that dinner we watched President Barack Obama’s speech to America’s youth. This is not a political blog (and that was not a political speech) but just in case you missed it… I will provide a link: CLICK HERE.

What that speech prompted me to do (as a 52-year old man) was to sit down with my 11-year-old daughter and remind her that her opportunities are endless… as long as she starts now, works hard, finds a mentor and never quits. While all of her dreams may not come true, none of them will ever come true without a commitment to the cause and a sincere dedication to learn and apply the knowledge she acquires along the way. Above all, quitting is not an option!

Sounds like good advice for aspiring guitar players.

OrianthiCase in point: Orianthi Panagaris, the young female guitar-playing superstar to the left that Carlos Santana called “the one he will pass the baton to” and the same young lady who practiced on stage with Michael Jackson the night before his tragic death.

Orianthi Panagaris or “Orianthi” was born on January 22, 1985 in Adelaide, Australia.  She learned to play the acoustic guitar at age 6, started playing electric when she was just 11 and started writing songs and performing at the mature age of 15.

Orianthi had the opportunity to meet Carlos Santana when she was 18 in her hometown. Carlos invited Orianthi to get up and jam with him during the soundcheck then asked if she would join him on stage later that night.

She has played with Prince and toured with Steve Vai.  She played at the Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival and also appeared at the 51st annual Grammys with Carrie Underwood where she was Underwood’s lead guitar player.

Not bad for a young girl who picked up a guitar at a young age, worked hard, found a mentor and never quit.

Check out what Carlos Santana had to say, then watch this girl rip it up on her PRS:


    • says

      Yes she does! She started about three years ago but really began working hard on her skills about one year ago. She takes a weekly lesson from a local professional and practices 30 minutes every day – which is impressive for a young honor student who juggles school, homework and other desires/responsibilities. I am very proud of her! -GuitarDaddy

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