Ask guitar players about their instruments, and you're likely to get a story—where the guitar came from, or what makes it unique, or why the player will never part with it. Most guitarists have strong feelings about their primary tool, and some are downright passionate about their axes. Chuck Holley is a professional photographer and writer who loves music and listening to musicians talk about their trade. For several years, he has been photographing guitarists with their prized instruments and collecting their stories. This beautifully illustrated book presents these stories in revelatory photographs and words.
The guitarists included in this book range from high-profile performers, including Rosanne Cash, Guy Clark, Laurence Juber, Jorma Kaukonen, JD Souther, Bill Frisell, Dave Alvin, and Kelly Willis, to renowned studio musicians and band members. Holley's beautifully composed photographs portray them with their favorite guitar, including detail shots of the instrument. Accompanying the photographs are the musicians' stories about the Gibsons, Fenders, Martins, and others that have become the guitar in their lives, the one that has a special lineage or intangible qualities of sustain, tone, clarity, and comfort that make it irreplaceable. Several musicians talk about how the guitar chose them, while others recount stories of guitars lost or stolen and then serendipitously recovered. Together, these photographs and stories underscore the great pleasure of performing with an instrument that's become a trusted friend with a personality all its own.