Finger-Pickin’ Good

More than a billion people watched world-class guitarist Tommy Emmanuel perform at the closing ceremony of the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney. One of the finest finger-picking guitarists alive, the 52-year-old Emmanuel was selected to represent his native Australia, where he’s pretty much a national hero. But here, he enjoys what we generally refer to as a cult following, which makes it a helluva lot easier to get a semi-private lesson from the guy when he comes to town. Case in point: In addition to performing a full-on concert, Emmanuel will give a workshop the next night for a few lucky wanna-bes.

The musician was slowed last year by a heart condition that he now appears to have under control. In a New Year’s Day message to his fans that he videotaped and posted on YouTube, Emmanuel teased that he’s been practicing every day and is looking forward to seeing everyone back on the “endless road.” There it is, your homework assignment from Mr. Emmanuel: Start practicing. You don’t want to embarrass yourself in front of the master, do you?

Mon., Feb. 11, 7:30 p.m., 2008