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The first time I met Chet was about 1963. I think I was 13. My dad had taken me to Nashville to visit a friend of his, Norro Wilson. I think Norro at this time was running Warner Brother records. Norro asked what I would like to see, and of course I said I wanted to meet Chet Atkins, never thinking anything that wonderful would or could happen. The next thing I knew, I was being taken to meet Chet in his office in the RCA Studio building in Nashville. I'm not sure if I was able to do anything other than stand there with my jaw dropped open. Chet gave me a couple of albums, which he autographed. I can remember feeling real stupid and thinking, "why didn't I say something?"

In later years probably about 1974 or so, one of the more memorable meetings happened when Tommy Jones and I were both still living in Nashville and we were out running around one night. Tommy said he was supposed to met Chet at this steak house for a minute and asked me to come along. Well he didn't have to ask me twice and besides, we were in my car. Anyway, when we got there Chet was already eating, so Tommy and I went to sit at his table. Tommy introduced me. I think I just sat there with my jaw dropped opened -again. While we were there, Dwayne Eddy walked up and Chet introduced us. Chet actually remembered my name and just when I thought it couldn't get any better, Chet asked if we wanted to go with him to hear a friend of his who was in town doing a concert. This friend turned out to be John Knowles, who was also a friend of mine. Well we left the steak house and Chet said, "I'll just ride with you if that's alright." (note: I'd have carried him on my back if he'd wanted.) I could not believe it - here I was, a little guitar picker in Nashville with CHET ATKINS riding in my car to a concert that he had invited me to. Whoa... At the concert, Chet, sat between Tommy and I, and talked about how they did things at his concerts and stuff. I had to pinch myself repeatedly to make sure I wasn't dreaming. John played fantastically by the way.

After many months, I finally did wash the inside of the car - reluctantly.

- Charles David Alexander

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