Blind Jacksonville guitarist heads on tour

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A Jacksonville musician is packing his guitar and headed on tour and this young man is no stranger to the spotlight.

Conrad Oberg, 20, is gearing up to take his talents to Indium Club. He has always had dreams of performing for large crowds and while he is blind, he says there is nothing that can stop him from performing.

"I feel like playing music in front of people is what I was put on this Earth to do," Oberg said.

Oberg's guitar is his instrument and his fingers are his tool. His ears are his hidden secret because he relies on them to hear and memorize chords. He gracefully slides his fingers along the strings to create melodic lines of song by Willie Dixon and Robert Johnson.

"I have no vision in my left eye and about 15 percent of my vision in my right eye," said Oberg.

His childhood days were filled with music. He grew up listening to great musicians, who he says have shaped his life and his music in more ways than one.

"Jimmy Hendrix is definitely my idol," said Oberg.

At age 20, he's ready to make his New York City Broadway debut, headlining Les Paul Night at the Iridium Club. It's a showcase for the world best-known guitarist from Guns N' Roses to Ted Nugent.

Oberg started on the piano at age two and picked up his first guitar at 10. Off the bat, he began headlining blues festivals throughout the South. At 15 years-old, he opened the 40th anniversary of the Woodstock Festival. Not to mention, Rolling Stone and CNN picked up his story.

"I try to keep it positive because the last thing a person with a disability wants is for people to feel bad for them," said Oberg.

It's easy to hear the blues is in his blood because it's a genre he discovered as a child. In fact, he even taught his father how to play bass guitar for fun.

"When you are happy you can put on music to make you feel good. When you are sad you can put on music to make you feel better. It's sort of therapeutic in that sense," said Oberg.

Before Oberg's major NYC debut, he is playing Friday, Sept. 26 at Mojo Kitchen in Jacksonville Beach.

For event info: CLICK HERE


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