Guitar Player Paul Yandell Honored For Work With Chet Atkins
August 15, 2011 at 6:45 AM (PT)
During his lifetime, late Country great CHET ATKINS bestowed the title “c.g.p.,” for “Certified Guitar Player,” on only four guitar pickers, including TOMMY EMMANUEL, JOHN KNOWLES, the late JERRY REED and STEVE WARINER. At a program SATURDAY (8/13) marking the opening of the new CHET ATKINS exhibit at the COUNTRY MUSIC HALL OF FAME AND MUSEUM in NASHVILLE ATKINS’ daughter MERLE asked STEVE WARINER to help her continue the tradition. She read a proclamation that officially conferred the last and final “c.g.p.” title on PAUL YANDELL, the master guitarist who had been ATKINS’ bandleader and confidant for over 30 years.
The proclamation read, “Whereas, long a fixture as CHET’s band leader and confidant, PAUL YANDELL was truly invaluable. Whereas, he is no stranger to accolades for his many contributions to country music, the NASHVILLE recording community, and the guitar world in his own rights. Whereas, observing that PAUL YANDELL was involved in the distribution of all the c.g.p. honors as CHET’s assistant, and being extremely humble and modest, recused himself of that very honor. Be it resolved by the ATKINS family that throughout the land PAUL YANDELL,, thumbpicker supreme, be known as the last and final a c.g.p., certified guitar player. PAUL, you are truly the c.g.p.’s c.g.p.!”
“I was thrilled to be invited to help honor PAUL like this,” said WARINER. “He’s an incredible player and a dear friend to me, as he was to CHET. What a cool class thing for MERLE and the ATKINS family to do. So completely right!”
PAUL started his career with THE LOUVIN BROTHERS in 1955 and after serving in the ARMY, joined the KITTY WELLS show until 1970. He joined JERRY REED in 1970 and then ATKINS in 1975, supporting CHET in his career for the next 25 years.
Check out more information on the CHET ATKINS exhibit and the COUNTRY MUSIC HALL OF FAME at www.countrymusichalloffame.org.