Hi, my name is Richard A Ewing and music has always been a big part of who I am and now that I have decided to pursue my dream of having a career in music I need your help to make that happen.
I grew up in a working class family with parents who sometimes worked multiple jobs to support me and my brother but always found time to be a part of music groups. So music has always been a part of my life, although it wasn't always clear to me that I would someday pursue a career in music. I first fell in love with singing after joining the Maryland state Boychoir when I was twelve. Although I loved to sing I was never the most talented singer in the room and never got many of the solos. Around this time I discovered the guitar, first developing a slight obsession with the game guitar hero before finally picking up my brothers guitar he had long abandoned and began teaching myself and practicing for hours. I wanted to be a rock guitarist at first (along with every other teenager) but in high school discovered the Classical Guitar when the teacher of the guitar class brought in his old teacher from his undergrad to play a concert for the class. Before then I didn't even know that the guitar could be played like that or that schools had programs for guitar. From then on I knew what I wanted to do and after graduating I began taking lessons at the local community college where I started on a music degree. Since my parents wouldn't pay for a degree in performance I settled for a degree in music education but I still maintained my dream of going into performance.
I received my associates from the Community College of Baltimore County and then got a performance based scholarship to attend Shepherd University, the same school that my high school class guitar teacher went to and ended up studying with the same teacher that had blown my mind with my first exposure to the classical guitar. Here I struggled to get through all of my education classes, since all I wanted to do was play guitar, but I finally graduated with my teaching degree (cum lade somehow) and then it was time to make a decision.
I could either take the safe route and start looking for a job as a music teacher or I could go back to school to pursue a masters in performance for classical guitar, which in the classical guitar industry is essentially the only way to get your foot in the door. I knew I had a late start compared to most others pursuing the same thing as me but it was all I wanted to do and I put in the practice hours to make it happen. I practiced for 5 hours a day to prepare for my auditions, even cutting back on work hours to give myself the practice time I needed, (at this point I had started teaching private lessons and substitute teaching in Baltimore County Public schools). In the end I somehow managed to get into my dream dream school, receiving a scholarship to attend Peabody institute where I am currently attending.
I have just finished my first year of my masters program at Peabody and its gone really well. I've done really well in all of my classes, I placed in some major competitions earlier this year (this being the first time I've ever competed), and I've even began performing fairly regularly in the Baltimore area. However, in order to take my professional career to the next level I need to invest in a professional instrument. The amount I am trying to raise is pretty much the base line in terms of the cost of a professional level classical guitars. Professional end Classical guitars are hand made (thus the $8,000 price tag for a guitar) and since it is specialized industry I will be going around to individual luthiers to find the one that will work best for me. Right now I am working two jobs and giging to pay for rent (all while being in school full time) but I will need help to be able to get an instrument that will allow me to compete with others in my industry and allow me to develop my sound.
Stay up to date
I will be updating everyone on the progress of my campaign and my search for a guitar through my newsletter which you can subscribe to through my website aoguitar.com.
In my newsletter I will not only be updating everyone on how the financial campaign is going but also on my search for a guitar. I'll keep you updated on luthiers I've checked out and the kinds of instruments I've found as well as other things I have going on in my music career.
I hope you will donate to my campaign, I really believe I have something unique to share with the world and that making music in this crazy world really means something.
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