a Lifetime Achievement award by Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu on Thursday at the Governor’s Arts Awards in Baton Rouge.
“It’s wonderful,” Burton said. Born in Minden and raised in Shreveport, Burton lived in Los Angeles for more than 40 years and then moved back to Shreveport. “I’m glad that I moved back to my hometown. … The people’s hospitality is wonderful.”
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame guitarist was a celebrated sideman for Rick Nelson, Elvis Presley, John Denver and Jerry Lee Lewis. He got his start at the Louisiana Hayride in the 1950s and then moved to Los Angeles. He was a highly sought-after session musician for artists like the Everly Brothers, the Beach Boys, Merle Haggard and Sonny and Cher. He also pioneered chicken pickin’, a twangy style that has influenced scores of guitarists.
Of late, Burton enjoys working with the James Burton Foundation, which provides free guitar lessons at Caddo and Bossier parish schools. “I just really enjoy my foundation and being able to present guitars to kids.”