This evening, David Letterman featured a musician named Kaki King. I'd never heard of her before. Letterman introduced her, and there she was, a hip-looking young woman, quite tiny, dwarfed by her Ovation guitar. I thought the obvious: sensitive singer-songwriter, quite possibly some prefab star who was going to karaoke her way through a Jewel-meets-Edie Brickell mope-fest.
Holy cow, was I wrong. First, she didn't sing. Second, she used the guitar oddly, with her left hand drooped over the fretboard, opposite to the usual style. Third, she was astounding—aggressive, percussive, playing a strangely urban and almost electronic composition on an acoustic guitar. So I hit Google, and there she was on the cover of Acoustic Guitar magazine. Of course. Young? Pretty? Firebrand talented at solo acoustic guitar, something usually reserved for 40-year-old balding guys?
And most of the time, I hate the sound of Ovation guitars too. Bowl me over.