Through a blog he wrote at EdNashOnline.com, Nash brings us the story of Jay Duncan and his company, DuncanAfrica Guitars. Jay, a master guitar luthier, had a vision for a self-sustaining foundation based upon the crazy idea of giving away his life’s work: he planned to give impoverished people groups the knowledge and skills needed to build a livelihood in the craft of guitar-making.
In 2005 Jay and the Duncan Africa Society established their first school in Mpigi, Uganda in order to bring an affordable version of his instruments to a larger market, and more importantly to effect positive change in this impoverished third-world community. The Duncan Africa Society school teaches not only luthierie (guitar making), but also English, math, computer skills, first aid and business. The guitars are then shipped to the Duncan Africa Society offices in Canada to be sold on the open market, with the proceeds returning to Uganda in the form of craftsmen’s wages.
A few weeks ago, a Nashville producer brought a DuncanAfrica guitar to the Altius offices on Music Row - Nash, a music industry insider and guitar-lover, took some time to play the instrument and hear the backstory. Nash was intrigued, and after writing a blog to tell the story still felt that there was more to be done. So he created a campaign through Kickstarter to fund a full documentary that will take him to Mpigi, Uganda and Vancouver, BC to explore the full story and interview the people whose lives have been changed for the better by DuncanAfrica guitars.
Ed summed it up best in his blog, “As I was strumming this guitar, I looked at the intricate craftsmanship and thought about all of the lives that have benefited from its manufacture — the sense of purpose and the economic viability it has brought to those who had once only dreamt of such things. It made me smile and shake my head in wonder… As the sounds hung in the air, I knew this was a powerful lesson: teach a man to build guitars, and the music just might change a village… a war-torn nation… maybe even the world.”
For more information about supporting this documentary, visit the Kickstarter campaign page at http://www.kickstarter.com/
Resource The Daily Wrap: http://www.dailywrapwsj.com/
Resource Ed Nash: http://www.EdNashOnline.com & http://www.AltiusManagement.com
Altius Management, LLC