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While I was working with Ray Stevens as his road manager, Ray planned a surprise birthday party for me at his office. As you probably know, Chet and Ray are very good friends and I was honored to become good friends with Chet during the six years I worked with Ray.

The party was going along quite nicely when Shirley(Ray's Assistant) brought in the birthday cake. Just then, Chet picked up my guitar which was in the room and he started playing "Happy Birthday!"

Well, being a guitarist myself, that was just an incredible event. Not only was it a wonderful gesture that Ray would take the time to put together a birthday party for me but to have CHET ATKINS - my high school guitar idol and most accomplished guitar player in history play "Happy Birthday" to me was just something I will remember to my dying day.

- Jim Stephany




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