You probably wouldn’t recognize his name (yet) but you may have watched a video of the guy in the photo above playing guitar on stage with Keith Urban.
That is Rob Joyce, the fan who Keith pulled out of the crowd at his concert July 2 in Gilford, NH. I had the pleasure of catching up with Rob for a #KitchenTableChat on Monday.
In a quick surf of YouTube posts I added up 600K views of Rob shredding while Keith sang along to his hit Good Thing. If you have not seen this extraordinary display of spontaneous concert showmanship (on Keith and Rob’s parts), check out this:
Video uploaded to YouTube by Robert Joyce on July 4, 2016 – I claim no rights to this content. Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBCzrv84cNw
Good gosh! Rob sure has nabbed his infamous 15 minutes of fame with style! Rolling Stone, Billboard, Taste of Country, Yahoo Music and a bunch of other media outlets covered the story. He was even a guest shortly after the concert on The Bobby Bones Show, the nationally syndicated show that originates on WSIX in Nashville and also airs on iHeart Radio.
Encouraged by the experience with Keith and the resulting positive attention, Rob, of Berlin, MA, is now planning to move to Music City this September. He’s anxious to pursue a career as a touring guitarist, something he’s dreamed about since he was in high school. And Keith sparked that dream many years ago.
Rob learned guitar when he was about ten and played in a punk band back in high school. Since then he’s been studying music in college and gigging around his hometown. He admits he wasn’t a huge country fan when he attended his first Keith concert in 2008 at the urging of a friend who was a fan of opener Carrie Underwood. But Rob said when he saw Keith play that night, it shattered any narrow opinions he’d had about country music and set him on his path to becoming a musician.
“This guy came out with a t-shirt and jeans and a Les Paul playing guitar riffs. I just totally wasn’t ready for it,” says Rob. “It made me realize that country is a big genre and there are a lot of different types of country in that genre.
“I walked out of the arena saying, ‘Ok, that is what I want to do for the rest of my life.’” Rob says.
Some 14 Keith concerts later, Rob got his big moment after he and his girlfriend Lex Wright borrowed a sharpie and scribbled “It’s my boyfriend’s birthday” and “Can I play your guitar?” on their two tickets. They were ready to wave them at Keith when he scanned the crowd for interesting signs, a concert ritual.
It worked! And something tells me Rob’s impromptu audition with Keith (in front of 8000 people) could go down in country/rock/pop history.
“I’ve been waiting for that A-HA moment and this is definitely that moment,” concludes Rob. Good luck, hope to see you play again!
#KitchenTableChat for KarenLovesCountry.com. If you are a country artist or music industry person with an interesting story to share with fans, please contact me.
The photo at the top was taken exclusively for KarenLovesCountry.com by Rob Joyce.
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