Friday, June 01, 2007

today : guitar week part three. The Love Affair

The fact is I love my guitars. Especially the flat top acoustic. It has an interesting story. It was bought by a friend of a friend of mine who has a habit of buying expensive things that he never uses. He decided to take up guitar playing and so bought an expensive guitar that he never really used (I think he really likes the act of buying stuff rather than actually using it). In order to fund another faddish purchase he sold it to my friend G at a knock down price. G is a keyboard player and roped me in to co-write and produce some demo songs for him. During recording I used the guitar and fell in love with it. It was the chime of the open G string that bewitched me. We put it through an Alessis bloom reverb and straight into the desk. The sound was perfect.

G lent me the guitar and I kept and played it for nearly two years. Despite my many offers to buy it from him he refused each time - mainly, I think churlishly just to wind me up. I gave it back.

But I didn't give up hope. I held a torch for the instrument for the next six or seven years, periodically asking if it was for sale only to be further rebuffed. G was pretty well off by now and there was no chance he needed the cash. It was a long dance, a story of love and loss. In fact if 'Our Tune' still existed then I'd send it in. I always thought of the guitar as mine, in the same way that feted lovers may hook up and maybe even marry other people, but retain a significant corner of their heart for the one they really love.

But quite suddenly, tired of the rat race, G gave up his wealth and went to work unpaid for charity. At some point, perhaps through genuine need of cash and perhaps through magnanimity, he called me up and offered to sell the guitar. I had to borrow the cash, but the deal was done. She was finally mine.

What I love about the guitar as an instrument is that it is so direct. The combination of sounds is directly made by the way someone's fingers address the strings and fretboard. Once you reach a level of skill, you cannot help but reflect yourself in the way you play. I guess this is true for most instruments. They become an extension of your mind and body.

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