Not so much for Joe Walsh. By the time he turned 18, the famous Eagles and James Gang guitarist, who was born in Wichita, Kansas, had lived in at least five states.
But out of all those places, Ohio — specifically Columbus — made the biggest impression on him, he said during a Wednesday ceremony held in his honor as the portion of West Nationwide Boulevard that fronts Nationwide Arena was dedicated as “Joe Walsh Way.”
It was in Columbus that Walsh first learned to play guitar, in part by listening to doo-wop tracks played by disc-jockey Doctor Bop on WCOL-AM.
Joe Walsh in Columbus: ‘I am home’
Standing at a podium underneath a newly-installed street sign bearing his name, the guitarist on Wednesday called Columbus his adopted hometown.
“I am home,” he said. “I am home.”
In town for this weekend’s VetsAid concert at Nationwide Arena, Walsh said during a 10-minute speech that he came to Columbus at the age of 9 when his stepfather took a job at Nationwide insurance. His family moved into a small house on Summit Street, and Walsh shortly thereafter got his first guitar from a Sears, Roebuck catalogue.
“After waiting endlessly for three weeks, it arrived, and I was the happiest and coolest 10-year-old in Ohio, in my mind at least,” he said. “I could only play two strings at a time.”