Thursday, 23 May 2024

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

In this article, we will explore two topics that are interconnected through the power of music. The first part focuses on developing creative players with VB IQ, while the second part delves into the lessons learned from personal losses. Music serves as the common thread that ties these topics together, and we will see how it can bring joy, comfort, and strength during challenging times.

Before we dive in, I want to introduce you to an incredible musician and guitarist, Tommy Emmanuel. Not only is he widely regarded as the greatest guitar player on the planet, but he is also a dedicated teacher and entertainer. Listening to his music is an absolute delight that can uplift your spirits, regardless of the genres you usually enjoy.

Tommy Emmanuel: A Solo Guitarist Extraordinaire

Tommy Emmanuel’s mastery of the guitar is truly awe-inspiring. As a solo guitarist, he has the remarkable ability to make the instrument come alive and produce sounds that surpass those of an entire band. What sets Tommy apart is his unique approach to music. He is entirely self-taught and cannot read or write sheet music. Yet, his passion and determination have propelled him to become one of the most fearless and captivating performers of our time.

In a TedxMelbourne talk, Tommy shares his philosophy on music. He states, “My music has brought joy to people’s daily drive to work, solace to Alzheimer patients, and willpower to cancer survivors. I keep working to make my show and my life better and better.” His fearlessness stems from his willingness to break traditional molds and constantly strive for personal growth and improvement.

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“Somewhere Over the Rainbow” – Two Unforgettable Versions

When discussing the songs that have brought me great joy, it’s impossible not to mention Tommy Emmanuel’s rendition of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” His interpretation of this classic tune is truly remarkable and showcases his exceptional talent. However, it would be remiss of me not to mention the late, great Izzy and his equally melodic version of this beloved song. Both artists bring their unique styles and vocal prowess, making these renditions absolute must-listens.

The Transformative Power of Music

In times of loss and sorrow, music has the incredible ability to offer solace and bring people together. It has played a profound role in my personal journey, especially during the last days of my mother’s life. Songs that my family and friends sang together filled her hospice room, providing comfort and creating lasting memories. Music has a way of connecting us on both a physical and emotional level, reminding us of the love, joy, and shared experiences we cherish.

Embracing Life Amidst Loss

Life, as we know, is full of challenges and transitions. It is during these times, like the hallway between open doors, that we often encounter hardship and uncertainty. The quote, “When life opens one door, it closes another, but it is hell in the hallway,” resonates deeply with me. It acknowledges the difficulties we face during times of transition. However, it also highlights the importance of embracing life’s uncertainties and finding strength in ourselves.

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Cherishing Memories and Sharing Stories

One valuable lesson I’ve learned is the importance of sharing and listening to stories with our loved ones while we still can. Memories become treasured legacies, and by sharing these stories, we can deepen our connections and understand the profound impact we have on others’ lives. Technology now allows us to bridge distances and share moments with our loved ones, even when physically separated.

Embracing Fun and Laughter

During challenging times, it is essential to find moments of levity and joy. Engaging in games, sharing laughter, and creating new memories can help alleviate some of the burdens we carry. As my sister and I reminisced, we discovered a game called Left/Right/Center that brought us a lot of fun. We also shared a hilarious experience of the “straw twirl” race, which still makes me laugh when I think about it. These moments of joy serve as a reminder that even in the face of loss, happiness can be found.

Time: The Precious Commodity

Time is a peculiar thing. It seems to slow down during difficult moments and flies by during periods of joy. Comedian George Carlin once joked about the shortest measurable amount of time: the time it takes for a traffic light to turn green and a New York driver to honk. This concept always brings a smile to my face. It is time that allowed me to be with my mother during her last days, and it is also time that enables us to cherish the memories we create with our loved ones.

Embracing the Journey

In honor of my mother, I am reminded that life is the sum of all the moments we share with others. It is a time to celebrate the impact we have had on each other’s lives. As I embark on my weekend filled with meaningful activities, such as running a volleyball tournament and working with young athletes and coaches, I recognize the importance of continuing to grow and contribute in honor of those who have shaped us.

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Q: How did Tommy Emmanuel become such a renowned guitarist?

A: Tommy Emmanuel is a self-taught guitarist who discovered his passion for music after listening to Chet Atkins. Despite having no formal training, he honed his skills through determination and practice, eventually becoming one of the most fearless and exceptional guitarists of our time.

Q: How can music help during times of loss and grief?

A: Music has a transformative power that can bring comfort and solace during times of loss and grief. It can fill the air with joy, provide a sense of peace, and create a bond between people, both physically and emotionally. By sharing songs and stories, we can honor the memories of loved ones and find strength in the healing power of music.


In this article, we have explored the enchanting world of music and its ability to uplift, comfort, and connect us. From the awe-inspiring talent of Tommy Emmanuel to the poignant renditions of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” we have witnessed the transformative power of music. We have also delved into the lessons learned from personal losses and the importance of cherishing memories, sharing stories, and embracing life amidst uncertainty. Through it all, we have discovered that music serves as a guiding light, bringing joy and hope even in the darkest of times. So, let us continue to celebrate the beauty of music, treasure our connections, and create lasting memories with those we hold dear.