Rhythm Guitar & Percussion, Lead & back up Vocal
My great grandmother was a guitar player and singer. Her name was Sophia Amundsen Vedness, a descendent of the great Norwegian Explorer, Roald Amundsen. She immigrated from Norway to American as a young woman. I am proud to carry on her love of music, sense of adventure and Roald’s love of sled dogs!
Both of my grandfathers were great musicians. My dad’s father played in a German Polka band. My mom’s father played guitar, banjo, mandolin and had a beautiful harp guitar that amazed me! I remember my grandpa recording my sister and I singing on his big reel to reel recorder when I was only three years old.
Imprinted with my mom’s music collection from the protest years of the 1960’s – Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Judy Collins, Joni Mitchell, the Slightly Fabulous Limeliters, the Kingston Trio – and my neighbors record collection- Donavan, Raspberries, Bobbie Gentry, Melanie, Badfinger – I was percolating in meaningful messages and big harmony, musical elements I hold dear today.
Still playing the Guild that was given to me as a child, I remember the days she was passed around the living room as we took turns playing and singing at Christmas time. The childhood days when I sat on the living room floor with my motorcycle riding guitar teacher learning Cat Stevens, Beatles and Melanie songs. The traveling years when Guilda joined me on my adventures up through Canada to Prince Edward Island, driving cross country and playing for tips at Seaport Village in San Diego, turning 21 living on a beach in St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands and sailing back to the states again stopping in the Dominican Republic and the Bahamas on our way…
I’ve made much music with many musical souls over the years. Part of that was spent with a ramblin’ singer song writer friend. We recorded some songs, but mostly had the time of our lives as traveling minstrels on the road of life. Rumor has it that my old music partner is a well-known pirate in the Caribbean – still shaking his fist at the conventional world.
I also spent a good deal of time furthering my education, working in radio and television, and creating two really great kids. Yet making music was never too far from my mind.
I’ve played in a variety of bands and with many talented people over the years, including a duo with Ronn Burke for a number of years. Steve Damstra joined back up with Ronn & I in 2006, Natchez Trace came to life once again. We had a great time, made a lot of beautiful music and gathered many friends along the way.
Now, as Ronn steps back to pursue his solo career, Mark Lamm steps in to join Steve and I in our new band, “The Trace.” After much contemplation, we chose “The Trace” because it’s similar to Natchez Trace in musical taste, but different because Mark brings so much to the table as a life long, multi-instrumental musician, writer and composer. We are now able to add more to our repertoire and finally add some original songs too. We are going to be recording a CD of original music in the not too distant future, and playing a lot of great venues. Look out! This is going to be way too much fun!
I Love Great Music!
Guilda has seen many miles…
My Great Grandmother.
Sophia Amundsen of Norway, played
a vintage Martin guitar…
(Relative of Roald Amundsen, first
explorer to the Magnetic South Pole)
My maternal grandfather, Dr. E.P. Reineke, played many instruments, including this Gibson Harp Guitar…(He was a Professor at Michigan State.)
My friend, Mark Swanson, custom designed this guitar for me, complete with inlay pawprints and portrait of my husky/samoyed girl, “Blue”…
My Mother, Barbara Spring, with my paternal grandfather’s pre-war Martin
Guitar. My mom is a published author, poet and artist. Check it out:
My paternal grandfather, Alois Spring
was a musician and played in a band. He was also a gymnast and watchmaker from Germany. Here is is playing guitar in the old country.
My uncle, Richard Reineke, is an excellent guitar player – classical, blues, folk, traditionals – My first public performance was at his restaurant “The Troubador,” in
Kalamazoo many moons ago…
Here’s a close up of the inlay on the headstock of my Swanson Guitar. You can see his work at: