“MR. GUITAR”—The First Single Performed By Tommy Emmanuel C.P.G. and Michael Cleveland From ‘WE STILL CAN'T SAY GOOD BYE’ A Musicians' Tribute To Chet Atkins Out Today

Article Contributed by SRO | Published on Friday, March 15, 2024

“Mr. Guitar,” the first single from the upcoming multi-artist album WE STILL CAN’T SAY GOODBYE – A Musicians’ Tribute to Chet Atkins, has been released today (Friday, March 15) to all streaming platforms via Morningstar Music Productions, with distribution worldwide by MVD Entertainment (see the track listing below.)  “Mr. Guitar” is performed by 2024 Grammy Award-winning guitarist and acoustic guitarist extraordinaire Tommy Emmanuel—who became one of five people ever named a C.G.P. (Certified Guitar Player) by his idol, music icon Chet Atkins—and Grammy-winning bluegrass fiddler Michael Cleveland. Listen to the song HERE and view a sizzle reel about the album HERE.

Featuring 15 tracks and 22 artists from the from the country, rock, bluegrass and acoustic musical realms, WE STILL CAN’T SAY GOODBYE – A Musicians’ Tribute to Chet Atkins was conceived and produced by 3-time Grammy-winning, bluegrass and country songwriter, producer and guitarist Carl Jackson. He is a longtime Glen Campbell collaborator, vocal arranger for TRIO II with Linda Ronstadt, Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton; Jackson also produced the 2003 Grammy-winning Country Album of the Year Livin’, Lovin’, Losin’ - Songs Of The Louvin Brothers. He has additionally had songs recorded by Garth Brooks, Ricky Skaggs, Rhonda Vincent, Emmylou Harris, and Trisha Yearwood.

“The C.G.P Chet awarded Tommy [Emmanuel] doesn’t go quite far enough,” says Jackson. “So, as Chet would say, ‘by the power invested in me,’ I’d like to add a word: ‘Certified Gentleman Guitar Player” or C.G.G.P. which is a more complete description of the man whose warm smile and sincere kindness is displayed without fail. With that same sincerity, he [Tommy] told me, ‘We’ve got to have Michael Cleveland.’ I thought it was perfectly appropriate, since Chet played a little fiddle in his early years, and I know how much he would have loved Michael’s back and forth with Tommy.”

“Mentoring and encouraging people is something that Chet always did,” says Emmanuel, one of five people ever named a C.G.P. by Chet Atkins. “I try to do this thing with Gareth (Pearson), and I try to do the same with all young people. I encourage them to do things that I learned from Chet. I hope that somewhere somehow, I showed somebody something because of him that changed their life and made their life better. Cause he sure did that for me.”

Michael Cleveland shares: "Every opportunity I’ve had to work with my musical heroes has been an honor, and to be invited by one of them to record on a tribute to the legendary Chet Atkins is very humbling. Tommy [Emmanuel] and I worked together in 2019 when, on a leap of faith, I asked him to be a guest on my album, Tall Fiddler, titled after a song he wrote. I was thrilled when he said yes, but I had no idea that would turn into the friendship it has. Chet’s reputation for being an incredible guitarist is known worldwide, and although I never had the chance to meet him in person, I’ve heard so many stories about his kindness and mentoring. I certainly feel that was extended to me when Tommy asked if I would record “Mr. Guitar” with him."

“Mr. Guitar” was recorded at Station West in Nashville, TN with Luke Wooten engineering and mixing. Additional musicians on the track are Tony Creasman on drums and percussion, and Kevin Grantt on bass.

Chet Atkins Archival Photo: Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

CHET ATKINS is the most recorded solo instrumentalist in music history who traveled far to become “Mr. Guitar.” The journey took the legendary icon from Appalachian poverty to international acclaim, from utter obscurity to three Halls of Fame. He is a 14x Grammy Award winner, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement recipient, A Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and a Country Music Hall of Fame inductee.

Now, for the very first time on one album, some of the world’s best guitar players and artists join together to pay a musicians’ tribute to the innovator, songwriter, producer, record company executive and visionary Chet Atkins, as Nashville and the music industry prepare to celebrate what would have been his 100th birthday on June 20.

The track listing for WE STILL CAN’T SAY GOOD BYE is as follows:

1. Mr. Guitar: Tommy Emmanuel C.G.P. & Michael Cleveland

2. Lover Come Back To Me: Brent Mason

3. Alley Cat: Ashley Campbell & Thor Jensen

4. So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad): Vince Gill & Bradley Walker featuring Eric Clapton

5. Yakety Axe: Ricky Skaggs with Charlie McCoy

6. Sleepwalk: Jerry Douglas & Bryan Sutton

7. In His Hands: Carl Jackson

8. Mr. Sandman: Gareth Pearson

9. Windy And Warm: Brad Paisley

10. How’s The World Treating You: James Taylor & Alison Krauss

11. Caravan: Guthrie Trapp

12. All I Ever Need Is You: Sierra Hull

13. The Entertainer: John Knowles C.G.P. with Catherine Marx

14. I Still Can’t Say Goodbye: Vince Gill

15. Freight Train: The Chester Bees

(Campbell, Clapton, Emmanuel, Gill, Hull, Jackson, Jensen, Knowles, Mason, Moore, Paisley, Pearson, Skaggs, Sutton and Trapp)

* Morningstar Music Productions has collaborated with Opry Entertainment Group as the official Nashville retailer for “We Still Can’t Say Good Bye”. Click HERE to pre-order or visit the Chet Forever website HERE.