This month’s April showers bring May flowers, but it also brings April Guitar Month.
I never thought much about the beauty and art in building a guitar until I read a Jonathan Kellerman psychological thriller which described supporting character Robin Castagna’s lutery skills in detail. Somehow up till then I just assumed that such musical instrument were assembly line productions. Silly me!
About then I began considering guitars, the tool of talented guitarists. Thinking back to the early years of R&R, showman Chuck Berry’s solos gliding across the stage, instrumentalist Duane Eddy’s rousing twangy sounds, and sessions guitar maestro Big Jim Sullivan’s varied and versatile performances happened because they as true musicians used the best vibrating string pieces available. They not trumpets, saxes, piano, and/or drums accompanied vocals more and more.
Success should be based on talent NOT theatrics like smashing instruments. What can be more useless than destroying anything truly special? No cacophony please! Case in point: Solid-body electric guitar inventor Les Paul did not need a dramatic persona. His innovative style plays on and continues to inspire.
Acoustic, classic, steel-string, arch top, electric, what makes a fine guitar is craftsmanship. Recently I found a custom double neck eagle bass on display. Paired to the right man (Leland Skylar) it made music to the ears.