Luthando Jackson is a mini music maestro

Luthando Jackson has been playing the guitar for only two years, and already he impresses all who hear him strum. The nine-year-old, who is the first in his family to show such prowess on the instrument, has a natural affinity for the guitar.

Image description Luthando Jackson is making his home town of Pietermaritzburg proud with his guitar skills. (Image: News 24)


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Priya Pitamber

Luthando Jackson has been playing the guitar for only two years, and already he impresses all who hear him strum. The nine-year-old, who is the first in his family to show such prowess on the instrument, has a natural affinity for the guitar.

He is only nine years old, but if the past couple of years are anything to go by, guitarist Luthando Jackson may well eventually join the ranks of legendary players like Jimi Hendrix, BB King and Eric Clapton.

But for now the self-taught musician, who goes to Merchiston Preparatory School, is making a name for himself in his town of Mountain Rise in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal.

His father, Oupa Jackson, told News 24 that Luthando got his first guitar from his mother for his seventh birthday. “She went and bought him a no-name brand guitar and he started playing from the first day he received his present,” Jackson explained. “He started listening to music and repeated what he heard.”

Luthando’s natural talent is already getting him well-deserved recognition. He has appeared on a national news bulletin, received a cultural scholarship from his school, and has showed off his skill at public events. He is also just as happy to put on a mini concert for his family.

Talent gets you far

The school’s principal, Dave Beetar, told News 24 Luthando was a phenomenal guitarist. “He has shown an interest in music. I don’t think the family realises what a talented guitarist Luthando is.”

Acclaimed South African classical guitarist James Grace, who saw the young player perform at a school assembly, is also was also taken with his talent.

“I was very impressed with him then,” Grace told eNews Channel Africa (ENCSA). “And he played a nice song there and we thought it would be great to actually include him in a concert when I am next here in Pietermaritzburg.”

Love for music

Jackson said his son preferred playing Spanish and classical music.

Watch Luthando play:

Luthando’s passion for the guitar comes from a simple reason. “I love playing the guitar because it exercises my brain,” he told the state broadcaster, SABC. And he practices daily.

He would like to teach other people how to play the guitar and his aim is to become a music teacher in the future. It’s an aim that has the support of his father. “He can be whatever he wants to be. To us he is a normal child with a special gift. At school he participates in all the activities. He plays rugby, cricket and basketball,” Jackson said.

But it seems music is Luthando’s trump card.