Originally created 11/04/04

Love of golf has guitarist longing for tee-off time



Paul Brewster is eager to return to the Imperial Theatre with Ricky Skaggs, but there is another place in Augusta he would rather be.

"Playing the Augusta National is my dream," he said by phone. "I was interested in golf way before I went into music. My brother, David, and my dad both got into golf late in life, and it was my brother (who died in 1995) who kind of introduced golf to me."

The guitarist and harmony vocalist with Mr. Skaggs' Kentucky Thunder band performs with Mr. Skaggs at 8 p.m. Friday at the Imperial, 745 Broad St. Tickets are $30. Call 722-8341 or buy online at imperialtheatre.com.

Mr. Brewster is such a golf fan that he and his 14-year-old son, Aaron, stood outside the Augusta National gates in April for leftover practice-round tickets.

Mr. Brewster has walked the famous Augusta greens before: He used to get tickets from an Augusta banker before the banker retired.

He even quit touring with one of bluegrass music's most popular bluegrass groups, The Osborne Brothers, in 1989 to work at the Imperial Golf Club in Naples, Fla.

"I was with the Osbornes for 10 years, and I cut my show business teeth with them," he said. "They were one of my favorite groups growing up, and they taught me about being a professional musician.

"But it was the money why I left them for the golf course job," he said. "I'm not going to lie ... I helped inside the pro shop, cleaned the carts, cleaned the clubs and did a little teaching."

His growing family and other factors led him to join Dollywood theme park's True Blue bluegrass band in 1992, which led to Mr. Skaggs' Kentucky Thunder band.

When Mr. Brewster is off the road from touring with Mr. Skaggs, he coaches golf to home-schooled boys in Hendersonville, Tenn. They won the first tournament they entered earlier this year.

While he might love for fans to know him better for his golf skills, Mr. Brewster gained fame through his recordings and appearances with Mr. Skaggs, Knoxville Grass, The Pinnacle Boys, The Osborne Brothers and other acts.

His latest Skaggs Family Records CD, Everybody's Talkin' (the title cut is the Midnight Cowboy movie theme), earned praise in country, bluegrass and other publications. It includes guest vocalists Lee Ann Womack on Don't Go, and Dolly Parton on Slowly I'm Falling To Pieces.

It was co-produced by Mr. Brewster and Kentucky Thunder bass player Mark Fain.

Don Rhodes has been writing about country music for 34 years. He can be reached at (706) 823-3214 or don.rhodes@morris.com.