Friday, December 9, 2011

A Tribute: To Clay Leopard

Now some of you reading this will not have a clue who Clay Leopard is. For those of you that do know him…no he has not passed away, or at least to my knowledge. For those of you that have ever heard him play guitar, you know what one God given talent he has.

I first met Clay years ago as an eighth grader. Even at an early age he was an amazing musician. While his mom and dad paid for his music lessons so that he could play his guitar in church, secretly he spent his free time learning Ted Nugent and Lynyrd Skynyrd. And boy did he learn good. Hoop if ya happen to read this, please comment and tell everyone I’m telling the truth. On up in about the tenth grade Clay and I were at a friends house listening to some music. We happened to be listening to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s double platinum album, which by the way hadn’t been out very long. Clay heard the first few notes crank up when he said something to the effect of hey I can play that. Now I new he was pretty good, but I had to challenge him just a little. I said “ so you can already play that whole song.” He said, “no I can play that whole album.” We spent the next hour testing him on his very brazen statement. We started the record over and Clay fussed over his guitar for the first few minutes, tweaking and tuning. We figured he was just stalling until he found the sound he wanted and a big smile came over him as he began to play. Note for note…he played perfect.

About half way through the record we decided to test him a little more. As he would play we would turn the volume down so that he couldn’t hear it then gradually bring it back up, he was always in time. We were blown away. He was a perfectionist when it came to his music. Even to the point where he had trouble finding just the right group to play with in order to succeed.

Sometime after high school we parted ways. Clay made a few really bad life choices that to this day seem to have him weighted down. I hope someone out there that knows him now will show him this little tribute. I have made some bad choices too my friend and I don’t hold yours against you. You have a talent that somehow the rest of the world needs to see. What do you say ole’ friend…shall we play. Stop by anytime, I have two guitars strung and ready.

If a song ever reminded me of someone this one is Clay's.