Note: This article may contain commentary reflecting the author’s opinion.
The NFL hosted its season finale on Sunday. It was an eventful evening with the Buffalo Bills beating out the New England Patriots to earn the #2 seed. However, the matchup between the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars featured something special before the game even started.
Most all sporting events in this country feature a moment to play the national anthem just before the game to honor our country and the values we stand for (assuming the NFL players aren’t kneeling the whole time). The Jaguars featured a unique rendition of the national anthem performed on electric guitar by none other than a Florida man sporting an epic mullet. See the video below.
— Tony Bennett is God (@chickenbarmesan) January 8, 2023
I don’t think this performance could’ve been more patriotic. The entire stadium is adorned with American flags on the jumbotron, on the field, and even the performer’s guitar which had the flag painted on it.
He absolutely shredded his rendition, leading some to call it the greatest anthem performance in history. When thinking about national anthem covers on electric guitar, perhaps the quintessential example that comes to mind is Jimmi Hendrix playing it at Woodstock in 1969. However, it is said that Hendrix played the anthem as a protest to the war in Vietnam, in a very unpatriotic fashion. Instead of playing the anthem to cater to a bunch anti-war hippies on acid at Woodstock, our man in the video was playing it to honor our country.
The guitarist in the video is named Paul Wane who is a local Jacksonville resident. He plays in band called “Duval County Line”. Wane also has been operating a nonprofit foundation called “Guitars for Kids” which has supplied nearly 300 instruments to children over the past several years.
One of the kids who was a given a guitar from the foundation happened to be the son of a security worker at the stadium. The individual within security connected Wane with the Jaguars, which is eventually how we was chosen to perform the national anthem. Wane said, “We gave an instrument to a young man, and it turns out his father works security here at the stadium. He got to talking to some of his co-workers about it, and they invited me to do this.”
This unique opportunity provided an outlet to give further awareness to Wane’s cause. He emotionally explained the joy he feels when seeing a child get their first musical instrument. “I remember what it felt like, you know, to know it was my guitar,” Wane said. “And no one’s going to have it, it’s mine. To see that look on their face and to know they can’t wait to get it home.”
Wayne also said that out of the enormous crowd at the Jaguars stadium the most important people there were his family members. “My mother will be standing there. Unfortunately, my father is not here to see. I wish he could, but he’s watching,” Wane said. “My uncle, he gave me my first guitar, he’s going to be standing there.”
Note: Featured image is a screenshot from embedded content.
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