By Aurora King

Hickory – Redhawk Publications is honored to host virtuoso Vicki Genfan at their Fall Book Fair on October 30, from 12:00 PM- 6:00 PM at Catawba Farms. Genfan is a multitalented maestro, guitarist, singer, and composer. I had the privilege of chatting with Genfan about her artistry, the impact of COVID on her career, and her upcoming performance in Hickory, NC. 

Performing at the Book Fair will be your second performance since COVID. What are you looking forward to?

I’m looking forward to sharing that back and forth energy in the same space. It was hard to get used to playing to a video camera without the interaction. I got used to it, but it’s different. Any kind of interaction or performance is so different if you’re cut off from them. It’s like, I threw a ball; did somebody catch it?

You have accomplished many exciting things during your career, like being the first woman to win Guitar Player magazine’s Guitar Superstar Competition. What has been the most memorable moment for you?

That’s probably the most memorable. Guitar Player Magazine is for electric guitar players who play rock, blues, and metal. I’m an acoustic player, pretty much into everything but that. I saw an ad in the Acoustic Guitar Magazine, so I sent in my tape. It was odd that I was picked as a finalist being an acoustic guitarist. There were so many accomplished players, so winning was mind-boggling to me. To feel like those judges were recognizing what I was doing was different, but getting that recognition made me feel like I could do anything. 

Who are some of the more notable artists, producers that you have collaborated with?

I had Steve Jordan play the drums with me on a couple of tracks. Steve is one of the best drummers in the world, he’s produced more people than I can think about. I’ve gotten to play with Jennifer Batten, who played for Michael Jackson and in Jeff Beck’s band. Also, Sally Barker, she’s an incredible singer/songwriter from England and was runner-up in the UK Voice. 

What should the attendees of the book fair expect from your performance?

We are going to have fun. They will see me slap-tap. I call it slap-tap because I’m slapping like a bass player might slap bass notes, and I’m tapping harmonics. I also like to let people in on my process, and I do about half and half originals and cover tunes. A lot of cover-tunes that I’ve completely re-worked but are still familiar. There will be a couple of Marvin Gaye and some instrumental stuff. I really like to keep everyone in on what I’m doing on the guitar, so they get it, and I’m not off in a world all by myself. It’s a very inclusive concert.

We are also excited to announce that Catawba Valley Community College’s Jazz Ensemble will grace the stage with a performance from 5:00 PM-6:00 PM. Redhawk Publications would love to see you there.