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Keith Urban Recalls Being a ‘Fannish’ Boy

After moving to Nashville in 1992, Keith Urban began gradually establishing himself, eventually becoming the global superstar today. Keith is also widely considered a “guitar god,” a title he began earning during his youth in Australia, playing American west coast rock. That’s when he discovered Mark Knopfler, who would become his biggest inspiration as a guitar player.

“When I was 15, a guy who played guitar in a little band in Brisbane, where I grew up, was in love with Dire Straits,” Keith tells St. Louis Today. “He had this Stratocaster — it just sounded so great, and I said, ‘Where do you get your sound from?’ He said, I’m fully inspired by Mark Knopfler. Just the beautiful tone and the melodic creativity, it’s sublime.”

Keith was fully inspired from that day forward by Mark’s musical prowess. He’ll also never forget the day he saw him in a restaurant in Nashville when he first came to town.

“It was more of a strange fan sighting one night — one of my early years in Nashville,” Keith remembers. “He was sitting at a table in a restaurant. I was just sort of awestruck. The only really ‘fannish’ moment I’ve ever had was seeing him at the table! I waited ‘tll the end and introduced myself, and he was just really cordial. I would love to meet him proper some day.”

Keith is gearing up for 2009 CMA Awards, Nov, 11 on ABC. Amomg his nominations is one for the biggie — Entertainer of the Year.

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