A Tribute to the Late, Great Peter Piper

by Jon on October 27, 2010

Previously I mentioned that Peter Piper was a good friend of mine. Yeah, Peter and I go way back. It was a great honor for me to be called his friend. He was a real peach of a guy (in fact we used to call him Peter Piper the Peach). And MAN!! You talk about a picker! This guy could pick!!! I mean he was like a machine in motion! Over the years I sat for many hours at a time just watching him closely and listening, trying to absorb the intricate details of his technique and learn some of his “hot licks”. Hard as I tried, I was never quite able to master the style of this enormously talented man. But after many years of study and hard work I came very close – at least I like to think I did. No one else that I know of was ever able to get anywhere near to achieving that incredible and unique sound that Peter had so beautifully perfected. The luscious tones he was able to express are almost impossible to describe. You just had to be there to hear them for yourself. Looking back, I now realize what a tremendous privilege it was for me to have had such a wonderful opportunity as that and to be able to witness the sheer beauty that surrounded those what now seem like brief, fleeting moments. There’s just NOTHING that sounds quite as beautiful as the soft strumming of a pickled pepper being caressed by the hand of the MASTER…I mean NOTHING.  That was, after all, his specialty.  He couldn’t pick locks worth beans — nor guitars, for that matter!

I just realized something today as I was pondering my long friendship with Peter. In all those years we spent together, it never once occurred to me to ask him “Where does one find premium pickled peppers primed and ready to pick?” (Hmmmmmmmmmm. Now I guess I’ll never know; because as you probably heard, a perturbed postal worker…well, that’s another story for another day).

I have written a tune to honor my late, wonderful friend. I’ve tried to emulate some of the ideals, the sounds and riffs I learned from him. Though my efforts are feeble by comparison, I know Peter would understand and would appreciate the thought behind it and overlook the rough spots. That’s just the kind of guy he was (may he rest in peace). I call this “Peter Piper Passionately Picked Pecks of Premium Purple Pickled Peppers for Pure Pleasure and Possibly Perceived Profit” (or just “PP” for short). You have to sing along and it’s fairly upbeat and repeats ten times quickly– it’s a lot of fun; you’ll see!  NOT! I’m just kidding – had you going there for a minute, didn’t I? You don’t really have to sing.

Oh, all right!  Would you believe  “Peter Piper Was a Picker”? Anyway I hope you like it. “Here’s to you, Peter. RIP”.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Jon December 13, 2010 at 9:59 am

Thanks Ron! Yes indeed, we did have some wonderful times. Thank-you for being there — you changed my life forever. 🙂

ron shires December 13, 2010 at 9:38 am

That sounds like you. That’s good. I may have met that Piper Picker someplace when I was with you, but I don’t remember for sure. I may have been answering some questions about you from some girls wondering if you ever did anything but play a guitar.

Hmm. I didn’t think our days were full of trouble then, but in looking back; we had really good times together. Thanks for then and this.

The Nokes October 30, 2010 at 10:09 am

Enjoyed your story, and your original music is fantastic! Pure genious. I can say with complete honesty that the student has surpassed the master. I can hardly wait to see what you’ll bring to us next time. The master would be proud of you.

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