The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

June 19, 2012

Mike Pound: Restring Joplin event strikes positive chord

When I was in sixth grade I took guitar lessons for about a month.

Once a week after school I would take my cheap guitar and walk from my classroom at St. Xavier’s Elementary School in Junction City, Kan., to St. Xavier’s Junior High, where the nice lady who taught guitar also taught junior high school students.

I don’t remember what exactly the nice lady taught at the junior high school, I just remember that she was nice and incredibly patient.

I remember learning two or three chords on the guitar. The first chord I think was G and the other two, I want to say, were Q and W, but I could be wrong about that. The chords I learned all figured prominently in the song “Hang Down Your Head Tom Dooley” because that’s pretty much what the nice lady had me try to play over and over again.

Despite the fact that the nice lady had me sing as I tried to play, I enjoyed my guitar lessons. But, after a few weeks, baseball practice started and I had to make a choice between playing baseball or trying to sing and play “Hang Down Your Head Tom Dooley.”

Guess which I chose.

I say all of this to make it pretty clear that I don’t really know much about guitars. But I do know a bit about folks doing nice things for other folks, and what the guys at Big Don & Son Music City, 1501 Main St.,  are doing qualifies as folks doing nice things for other folks.

Don Duckworth, Jr., says that Big Don & Son will hold its second annual Restring Joplin event from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. (or so) this Saturday at their store. What Don and several other music store employees will be doing on Saturday is restringing guitars for anyone who needs to have that done. Don said that last year the store took in and restrung more than 240 guitars and that no one was turned away. Don said it didn’t matter if the guitar was a 6-string, bass, 12-string or classical because the same free restringing deal applied.

“We even did an 18-string guitar,” Don said.

I didn’t tell Don that I didn’t know that 18-string guitars existed. As I said, I don’t know much about guitars but I’m thinking that an 18-string guitar would be pretty hard to play.

That reminds me, years ago in the comic strip “Beetle Bailey,” Beetle was late for something and when he was asked why he was late he said, “I got my shoestring caught in a 12-string guitar.”

I thought that was funny.

Don said Restring Joplin originally was designed as a relief concert for victims of the Joplin tornado but it sort of morphed into some quite different.

“There were a lot of people who were hurting and didn’t have the money to have their guitars worked on so we decided to do the work for them,” he said.

Normally, Big Don & and Son charges $25 to restring a guitar and that fee doesn’t cover the cost of the  strings. I told Don that I understood why he did the free guitar restring last year but I asked him why he decided to do it again this year.

“A lot of people told us they were looking forward to it. There are still a lot of people having a tough time and just don’t have the extra money to get their guitars taken care of,” he said.

Besides, the day isn’t just about restringing guitars. It’s a chance for folks who love music to get together. It’s a chance to talk about the Joplin music scene and it’s a chance to hear other people play. And it’s another chance for folks to try and put May 22, 2011, behind them.

All of which, in my book, makes Restring Joplin a neat deal.

Text Only
Local News
  • Carthage prepares for Marian Days

    The 37th annual Marian Days celebration will start in two weeks, and planning is well under way for the event that will bring tens of thousands of Catholics of Vietnamese descent to Carthage.

    July 23, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: It’s not Mayberry, but Carthage is close

    When I was a kid, I wanted to live in Mayberry. In a way, I suppose I still want to live in Mayberry, the fictional town featured in the classic Andy Griffith show of the 1960s.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Miami council waives fees for barbecue event

    The Miami City Council voted Tuesday to waive $3,750 in usage fees for Miami Elks Lodge No. 1320 for an upcoming barbecue championship at the Miami Fairgrounds.

    July 23, 2014

  • Joplin couple indicted in child porn case

    A federal grand jury indicted a Joplin couple Wednesday for alleged sexual exploitation of a second child in addition to a girl who was the subject of a preceding indictment of the husband for allegedly producing and distributing child pornography.

    July 23, 2014

  • Galena council rescinds landfill decisions

    The Galena City Council voted Wednesday to rescind decisions it made two weeks ago regarding a proposed landfill at Riverton.

    July 23, 2014

  • Missouri attorney general defends his support of Amendment 1

    With a large cornfield behind him and campaign signs all around, Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster appeared Wednesday at the David Collard farm to tout Amendment 1, an Aug. 5 ballot measure that would make the “right to farm” part of the state constitution.

    July 23, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

Must Read


Have you ever served as a volunteer for your state's conservation department?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter