“GREAT player and GREAT teacher. Can't say enough good things about the guy.”
- Mark Ardito (Pedal Steel Player for the Ridgeland Ramblers)
Following is from an Interview of Joel Patterson at http://www.mikeneer.com/lapsteelin/2011/07/12/conversation-with-joel-paterson/
“It was just one of things where I had wandered into a music store in Wisconsin and they had one of those cheap Sho-Bud/Fender beginner models from the ‘70s. I didn’t know anything about it—I just bought it for $500 from this guy and it was like, “Cool, I have a pedal steel!” I had no idea how it works and I wasn’t even into Country. I was a professional guitar player at this point, but I was totally lost on this thing.
Luckily, somebody told me about Ken Champion and I took lessons right away and I’m glad I did. I pretty much went right for lessons because I had no idea how to even set the thing up.
M: That was a pretty smart move—you probably could have done yourself more harm than good, which is what happened to someone like me….
J: That’s what I’d recommend for any steel player really. I was lucky that it was Ken Champion, who isn’t a guy who says, “Just play this…” and teaches you a bunch of hot licks that you can’t digest. He’s a very methodical teacher who started from square one and he wrote out great exercises.”
- Joel Patterson (a widely recognized Rockabilly, Jazz, and Blues guitarist withChicago groups like Devil In A Woodpile, Jimmy Sutton’s Four Charms, Kelly Hogan’s Wooden Leg, and his own Modern Sounds trio. He has toured and recorded with artists like Dave ‘Honey Boy’ Edwards, Wanda Jackson, and Carl ‘Sonny’ Leyland)
“Ken has helped me realize my lifelong dream to learn Pedal Steel. There is no way I would’ve stayed with it this long without Ken’s patient teaching to keep me interested and enthusiastic in learning this crazy, difficult instrument...”
- Mike Stelnicki, amateur Pedal Steeler and 10 year student