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Katie Garibaldi | I Don’t Have My Guitar With Me, I Feel Naked

The key that unlocked my passion for songwriting and music for me, was the guitar. Sometimes I think about how grateful I am for that instrument finding its way to me and me finding my way to it because without that six-string savior, I don’t know where I’d be.

As a kid, I was always making up melodies. I just walked around with this music inside of me that I felt like I couldn't get out. I hummed melodies and songs and I remember sometimes thinking, “What is this song I’m singing? Where did I hear it?” and realizing that I had just made it up.

It was a natural process for me to create melodies, but the melodies really didn’t have words yet.

My mom taught me how to play the piano and although it's a gorgeous instrument, it never felt like home to me. It was a separate entity than the music happening inside my mind and heart.

Then when I was about 11 years old, both my elementary school teacher played acoustic guitar for my class and my chorus teacher led us with an acoustic guitar. I was mesmerized by the instrument and everything about it seemed so magical and interesting.

Katie Garibaldi

My parents played The Beatles and rock and roll and country music when I was small, which was a big influence on my love of music, but the singer/guitar player combo didn’t really click for me until I saw it right in front of my eyes. It was the visual that connected the dots.

When my parents agreed to let me take guitar lessons, I remember coming home from my first lesson and writing my very first song. I only knew about three chords, but that's all you need, right? My fingers took to the guitar like it was my long lost friend or missing limb even, and I finally had the tool I needed to bring the songs I had in my heart to life. It gave words to my melodies and meaning to my music.

As I grew up, I became less interested in the daily events and drama of middle school and high school and looked forward to coming home, closing my bedroom door, and just playing the guitar and writing songs. This was my oasis, my emotional and creative outlet, and my coming home.

I still feel like I can't live without the guitar.

It's the essential ingredient to my authentic self, the gateway to my songwriting, a gift I'll never grow tired of, and it saves me every day.

I travel a lot for music and I joke that when I don’t have my guitar with me, (a rare circumstance) I feel naked. And it’s true—I’m not completely me without it.

Now, I have my very own custom guitar made by Breedlove Stringed Instruments with a Sitka Spruce top and Myrtlewood back and sides that fits me like a glove and is a wonderful muse for my songwriting.

I’ve released around ten albums/EPs at this point in my career and I still feel like the guitar gives me inspiration to keep evolving my sound and style, and to keep writing more music.

I just got back from another trip to Nashville that I visit frequently where I attended Americana Fest, a conference and showcase spotlighting Americana music and artists, and feel incredibly excited to sit down with my guitar and write some new stories.

Thankfully, God placed this love of music inside my heart and the guitar helps me translate that love into a format that I can share with others and hopefully inspire them too. This is the delightful journey that the guitar has taken me on, the real beauty of music and why I love what I do.

Music connects us and reminds us that we’re not in anything at all ever alone.

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