Q&A with guitarist Chuck Dailey

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

How long has music been in your life?

I studied violin for years, played in the orchestra. My mother started me when I was 3 years old on the accordion. My father was a concert artist in the early 1900s, and he played overtures on the banjo. But the guitar was always my first love because it's a solo instrument.

What would they think of your career?

I'd like to think they'd be proud of what I'm doing because I did not follow the regular course. I remember one time this violinist said, "Chuck, I really like what you did last night. Are you going to do the same thing tonight?" I sort of smiled. I said, "You know something? I'm not trying to be a wise guy. I don't remember what I did last night." That's the beauty of it. I go up to the mic. I make sure the guitar's in tune.

You've said boxing is your favorite sport. What about it applies to your music?

You climb into that ring and there's only two of you. You can't blame it on anybody else. If I lose, it's my fault; if I win, it's my fault. You do a lot of weddings. Here's the thing about weddings, though. By playing original material-soft, mellow and all that-it's background music. If I'm playing songs that people are familiar with, then that's a distraction. It's not all about me. It's all about them. So I like to be in the background. I've actually played during the whole ceremony, real tasteful-like.