In the beginning…..there was back to the future.

I don’t even know what to tell you first, life can sweep you up sometimes, taking you down different paths meeting different people and doing different things.

Things you thought you would never be able to do.

If I think back hard enough I can just remember Mrs. Taylor in my primary school English class, as clear as if it was yesterday telling the whole class as if she had said it a 100 times and no doubt is probably still saying it to this day!

“You should always start a story at the beginning”


So I think that’s what I will do…..

It was probably around that time in my life that I first saw a film or more precisely a video tape, that would influence and shape my young mind and define a moment that will always stick with me.

That great timeless classic was Back to the future. I know there will be people out there that will shout “Yes me too!!” And to those people I say sit back and enjoy the ride there is more to come.

But to anyone unsure or wondering, let me show you what I mean.

At the beginning of the film Marty Mcfly(Michael J Fox) is skateboarding around the town of Hillvalley on his way to meet Doc brown ( Christopher lloyd).

Come to think of it, now that I am thinking about it, that film impacted me more so than I first thought.

I also took to skateboarding in my teens around the town I grew up in, with my green zero skateboard and Aldo bam skateboarding trainers and all the other typical skater looking gear on.


I think I managed an Ollie and a few other things before flying down a half pipe ramp at what felt like 200 miles an hour was the most I ever did with it.

But saving up to buy my first car led to that being sold and me and the skateboarding world parted ways, I haven’t touched one since, by that time the skateboarding craze had died down anyway, but back to the film .

In back to the future

Marty would not find Doc at his house but he would check out his insane looking amp that must have been a full 10 foot high.

This thing is a monster!

In true 80s style he turns every dial to the max, then he gets the craziest looking yellow/orange guitar out I have ever seen, I have never seen one like it anywhere before or since.

A quick search of google tells me it was a 1980s Hondo Chiquita traveler, no room for non-essentials on this beast.

Anyone who uses the full range of features on their guitars changing from neck pickups, whether they’re single coil or humbuckers will probably feel that something is missing on this one.

But for those players out there that favor the humbucker bridge pickup.


Maybe thats all you want and need in a guitar?

So Marty is standing there, the steel guitar pick shines in the light (A nice touch it really builds the anticipation) just then Marty smashes down on the strings of the Chiquita traveler unleashing all the power of what seems like a bomb going off.

This was the beginning……

My mind had gone into overdrive watching him fly across the room, that was it the floodgates were fully open I was being converted to all things guitar, I remember watching the rest of the film thinking this is the coolest thing ever, the film flies straight into a car park at a shopping center from there, with probably one of the coolest looking cars I had ever seen, the Delorean.

Not only did Marty have the coolest car ever it was also a time machine!

I spent the rest of the film absorbing wave after wave of brilliance, until Marty Mcfly hits the stage in the enchantment under the sea dance and nervously speaks into the microphone “this is an oldie………..well it’s an oldie where I come from” then lets rip with the most iconic fast paced mental song that he could of, a version of chuck berry’s Johnny B. Goode.

That’s it, there was no help for me now I was completely blown away and I knew, no matter how long it took I would learn to play the guitar and play that song.

As soon as the credits are rolling, I am sprinting to my parents asking for a guitar for my birthday, I was told that they were too expensive but that didn’t stop me asking every Christmas and birthday.

As the years went on the desire to get my very own guitar only grew, but things where I grew up weren’t like they are today.

hanging guitars in a music shop
Photo by Stephen Niemeier on

Guitars that are displayed on the wall look great but should you hang you guitar for a long time? click the link to find out.

You had to go to a guitar shop, no where else had them.

And yes you guessed it there was none near me.

This was before the internet was anything and the rise of Amazon and Ebay etc. made buying new and used guitars possible, even then nobody trusted online payments back then.

But there was still a chance, my secondary school had a music room and would give students musical instruments to take home and then teach them to play them.

If you are looking at getting a guitar check out my 8 tips to spot a lawsuit guitar buyers guide.


Brilliant, this is finally the time I get to play a guitar!

er how’s about a big fat no.

They said that all the guitars were out but there were other instruments available.

Ok not gone to plan but hey maybe I could start on the bass or drums like Eddie Van Halen.

It got worse, much worse they offered me a trombone.

Not to bash the trombone players, it is an extremely hard instrument to play, there are no markers for how far you have to slide it out to and on top of that there are different notes with how you blow through it.

At this point I said to the guy trying to get me to play it that “it’s just not for me”.


The closest to playing the guitar I could get was playing the schools keyboard during the music lesson, this was ok but you cannot give it the correct amount of time in a once a week music lesson, the other problem with it was maybe we used them in the lesson maybe we didn’t.

My mum had come through for me after the trombone episode and had managed to get hold of an electronic keyboard.

One of her friends showed me a few things but it didn’t have that connection with me so it kind of just faded away.

It seemed that no matter how hard I tried now was not my time.

Until COVID Struck!!

Click the post below to find out what happened next.

If you are looking to start playing guitar yourself check out my 11 fantastic electric guitar beginner tips post.

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