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A Perfectly Good Guitar: Musicians on Their Favorite Instruments

A Perfectly Good Guitar: Musicians on Their Favorite Instruments

by Chuck Holley


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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.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781477312575
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 05/02/2017
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 7.30(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Chuck Holley has worked as a commercial photographer in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota; a general assignment reporter and photographer for a southwest Iowa newspaper; and a photographer for a university.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Dave Alvin, A National Steel among the Hopi Dolls
  • Ray Benson, The Red 355
  • Toronzo Cannon, The Gig and the Job
  • Rosanne Cash, Something Perfect
  • Cindy Cashdollar, Risen from the Ashes
  • Guy Clark, A Chunk of Wood
  • Joanna Connor, The Great Mistake
  • Peter Cooper, All the Best, Tom T. Hall
  • Dan Dugmore, Blacka and the Bandit
  • Tommy Emmanuel, The Mouse
  • Alejandro Escovedo, Thousands of Songs
  • Denny Freeman, One Night at the Continental
  • Bill Frisell, Old Wood
  • Eliza Gilkyson, The Goya and the Gibson
  • John Hammond, Number 7
  • David Holt, Sara Jane's Tune
  • Bill Hullett, The New Old Nocaster
  • Cornell Hurd, The Wonders of the Galaxie
  • Daniel Ivankovich, An Education in the Blues
  • John Jorgenson, The Django Mystery
  • Laurence Juber, Clipped Wings
  • Jorma Kaukonen, Not Vintage, Just Old
  • Bill Kirchen, Three New Heads and Five New Handles
  • Sonny Landreth, The Strat under the Bed
  • Jack Lawrence, Doc's Martin
  • Greg Leisz, Twenty Bucks Well Spent
  • John Leventhal, One Guitar, One Thousand Gigs
  • Dave Malone, The $80 Telecaster
  • Rob McNelley, More Than Just a Guitar
  • Lisa Morales, A Rare Find
  • Scrappy Jud Newcomb, A Good Kind of Worn
  • Johnny Nicholas, Nothing Like a Don
  • James Pennebaker, Curtis Ray's Lap Steel
  • Louie Pérez, Mi Jarana
  • Casper Rawls, Connected Up, Austin Style
  • G. E. Smith, A Good Guitar Is a Good Guitar
  • JD Souther, A Long Way in a Short Time
  • Marty Stuart, Clarence White's \'54 Tele
  • Dan Tyminski, The First and the Last
  • Redd Volkaert, That Good Buck Owens Sound
  • Waddy Wachtel, The Best Deal Ever
  • Dustin Welch, A Catalog Guitar
  • Kevin Welch, Little Sister
  • Kelly Willis, Something That Matters
  • Jamie Lin Wilson, One Guitar for the Rest of Your Life
  • Carolyn Wonderland, Patty the Blueshawk
  • Acknowledgments

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