How long have you been playing?
Sam Jacobs was born in Converse, Louisiana 1946 and grew up listening to the Grand Ole Opry on the radio. In '58 he found a one string guitar in cousin Jack's closet and learned Peter Gunn. He moved to West Memphis, Arkansas in '61 where he met Conway Twitty and saw a Carl Perkins show. Moved again that year to Cortland, Nebraska where he performed with a clown playing musical water glasses, won first place two years in a row at the Brownsville Old Time Fiddlers Contest in the guitar division, and was featured on a Lincoln TV station. Throughout high school he continued to play county fairs, beer joints, polka fests, clubs and even the roof of Dairy Dip drive-in. He also taught guitar at a local music store by ear since he had no interest in learning to read music. Sam graduated Pleasant Hill High and attended Northwestern State University at Natchitoches, Louisiana where he met Will Mitchell and they formed a seven piece band called Mitch and the Mistys. They recorded a couple albums at Robin Hood Brian's studio in Tyler,Texas were ZZ Top and other hitmakers had recorded. The albums got some airplay in Shreveport and were hits in parts of Europe but the record company never told them. In '65 Sam was invited to join a band going to Cailifornia from Shreveport. They formed Al Dixon and the Southernmen which performed for Frank Sinatra's 25th year in show business at the Bistro in Beverly Hills. From '66 to '72 Sam went back to college and joined the National Guard. During that time he worked as a woodworker and architectural draftsman until graduating with a B.S. in Advertising Design. In '73 He moved to Nashville, Tennessee after encouragement from legendary songwriter and artist Mickey Newbury who he'd met in Louisiana. In '74 Sam set up a woodworking/art studio in the country while beginning to write more original material. In '77 he formed a band with his two brothers. Brother Dale played bass with the Geezinslaws and brother Pat played with the Red Hots and Kix Brooks. From '75 to 2005 he worked in the studios with players such as Dave Pomeroy, Terry McMillan, Vassar Clements, Joe Allen, Taz DiGrigorio, Michael Rhodes, and Joe Spivey. Sam did some guitar demos for Bill Anderson and a guitar demo for Don Johnson singing a movie theme. He played lead guitar on two albums with Boudleaux and Felice Bryant featuring Chet Atkins and Lenny Breau as guest guitarists. He has recorded and played in bands with Billy Ray Reynolds ,who had written a few number ones, and were occasionally joined by Bonnie Bramlett. Sam has jammed and hung with such folks as Dickie Betts, John Hartford, Ray Flacke, Joe Sun, Dobie Gray, Billy Joe Shaver, Ed Bruce, Shel Silverstein, the Hager Twins, Jim Ed Norman, Townes Van Zandt, Bruce Chanel, and many more history makers. In 2006 Sam was diagnosed with Hodgkins lymphoma and battled cancer for about six years and has since nearly fully recovered. From 2011 to present he finished a self-produced album, invented a musical instrument called the Thunderbird, and is playing in a band which includes his brother and son.
You're stuck on a desert island and only get to bring one album with you. What do you pick?
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