She’s a grandmother of seven, and was satisfied focusing on her children until she was 60. Now, at 81, Mary Ho shredded her electric guitar in front of thousands of people at Singapore’s annual National Day Parade on August 8.
“When I play the guitar, I am just on my own,” she says, in the video above. Mary decided at 60 that it was time she did something for herself. She decided to go back to her childhood dream – which was then dismissed as something meant for boys – and picked up an acoustic guitar.
Lacking any knowledge of sheet music or tablature, Mary sought the help of guitar teachers, but finally just taught herself through hours of practice. By 65, she had started learning the electric guitar. She practised and perfected the art to the point where her hands would bleed. When her children asked her why she was making herself suffer, she’d tell them, “It’s not suffering, I love (it). Yes, it’s painful, but I can bear it because I feel I must play guitar.”
Her passion for the guitar makes her feel beautiful and happy, says Mary, who can also play the keyboard and drums now. Her fame stemmed from the video (below) her grandson Freddie uploaded on YouTube some 10 years ago. Now, she’s released her own album, has fans worldwide, and has even met Carlos Santana, her idol.