Jim Fairbairn - Lead Guitar / Vocals
My guitar playing began at the age of 9. My parents bought me a cheap acoustic guitar
and I began lessons with an extremely strict guitar teacher. I wasn’t crazy about the
acoustic, I wanted an electric so I could begin my rock n roll career. This didn’t fall on
deaf ears so my dad said, “I’ll make you a deal. If you practice with your acoustic for
one year, I’ll buy you any electric guitar you want.” My father’s rules were simple. You
practice your actual lesson 30 minutes a day and then you can play whatever you want
afterward. At the 6 month mark he raised his expectations to 60 minutes a day. So I
continued down the same path for another 6 months. Without any reminder from me he
called my guitar teacher and told him to fill the studio with electric guitars of all price
ranges, but don’t have any price tags on the guitars as that may influence my decision.
So my father and I walked into the music store and I began playing a multitude of
guitars that caught my fancy. Long story short, I ended up with a brand new 1966
Gibson ES335, a guitar I still own to this day. Pretty cool dad, huh? I recall an occasion
where I was listening to the Allman Brothers and trying to figure out how to play like
Duane Allman and Dickey Betts when all of a sudden my dad opened by bedroom door
and listened for a moment. He wasn’t familiar with the Allman Brothers but said “I like
that blues song” followed up very sternly with “Now get back to your lesson”. Little did I
realize what the blues even were, I only knew I was just naturally attracted to this
certain style of music, the blues.
Guitar playing through my 20’s and 30’s pretty much took a back seat to everything
else life throws at you. But I still played once in a while and loved listening to music.
One day a friend of mine at work said he had written some songs and would I be
interested in going into a recording studio and play the guitar parts. It sounded like fun
so I agreed to it. Little did I realize at the time, but this was the catalyst of a new
beginning which has kept me active in bands ever since. I’ve played in many bands
over the years playing mainly rock with some blues and even country on occasion.
Performing with others in a live setting was something I craved more and more. At
times I found it to be very therapeutic. And here I am years later playing in Relic, an
appropriate band name for a guitar player like me.