Tim Wallis loves the guitar so much that he’s constantly trying to expand what it can do. The country artist and inventor will share his passion for picking in a master class for students at West Virginia University.
The master class is free and open to the public and will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 21, in the Antoinette Falbo Theatre, 2200 Creative Arts Center.
Wallis, of East Peoria, Ill., has been enthralled by the sound of the pedal steel guitar since he was a child, and he’s dedicated most of his career to applying pedal steel techniques to the electric guitar.
“Finding the Parsons-White string bender to be insufficient for his musical purposes, Tim has developed a wide variety of benders and string drops for his custom Telecaster that allow him to bend nearly every string and create a country lead guitar style that’s impossible to imitate,” said Travis Stimeling, assistant professor of music history in WVU’s School of Music.
Stimeling describes Wallis as “a masterful ‘chicken picker’ in the style of Jerry Reed and a technician like Albert Lee.” Wallis has been performing throughout the Midwest for more than four decades, and he’s the owner of the Timara Custom Shop, which produces string benders and drops and other innovative guitar products.
Wallis’s visit will benefit WVU’s growing bluegrass program. Since joining WVU, Stimeling has founded the WVU Bluegrass Band and Old-Time Band in 2014. The ensembles, which feature nearly 20 students among their members, have performed for more than 2,000 people in West Virginia during their first year.
CONTACT: David Welsh, WVU College of Creative Arts
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