See the full interview here
I started playing in the mid 1970's. I was born in East Chicago, Indiana, in 1962. When I was six or so my family moved to Davenport, Iowa. That's where I grew up, mostly. None of the other kids at school were into what I was; you may remember this was the era of disco and heavy metal, nobody I knew was really into blues or folk music. I was always fascinated by acoustic finger-style guitar. I just loved the sound of it! Artists such as Bob Dylan and Paul Simon and especially Leo Kottke and John Fahey fuelled my interest in early blues, ragtime, and all kinds of roots music styles. When I discovered Son House, Blind Willie Johnson, Big Bill Broonzy, Blind Blake, Memphis Minnie, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Barbecue Bob, Charlie Patton, Bukka White and so many others, a great treasure trove of music was revealed... and I just went deeper and deeper into it. It is still very exciting to me how so much music and quirky, individual, improvisational delight can be made in the hands, voice and heart of one person.