Billy Kemp here of the duo, Jeni & Billy. Thanks for visiting and I hope you enjoy your time here. I’ll be discussing the guitar, the banjo, songwriting, composing, and music-related stories that I’m close to and have happened upon the lifesaverbridge. You might be wondering, what is the lifesaverbridge? Read on and the story will follow.
When I was in the fourth grade I made a musical instrument that was guitar-like. The body was a cigar box, the neck was a piece of wood, the tuning pegs were empty sewing spools, the strings were wire from a roll in my family’s garage and the bridge was a pack of Five Flavor Life Savers. We called them rainbow Life Savers. My grandfather was a big fan of hard candy so there was always a pack around.
All of us in Ms, Schleicher’s Westowne Elementary School class created and made something that year in 1963. My best friend in her class was Dino Jones. After all of us finished our projects they were displayed in class for a time. Kids made all kinds of things. And I was proud of my guitar-like instrument because it actually could make music.
Dino Jones ate my bridge at some point and I did’t play guitar or guitar-like instruments for a few years. When I was thirteen I had a paper route and saved enough money to buy my first guitar, a Teisco Del Ray that had four pick-ups and could actually make a veggie-burger. It could do anything.
I bought it in West Baltimore where I grew up at a department store called E.J. Korvettes which stood for Eight Jewish Korean Veterans. I always loved that story behind their name.
The guitar and music have led me to the LifeSaverBridge which I’ve been on ever since 1967 and it’s one bridge I haven’t burned. It has taken me to many wonderful places and like Bob Dylan’s touring, it’s never-ending.
So welcome to lifesaverbridge!