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Willie G. Moseley

The "instrument that started it all"

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This doesn't necessarily refer to the first instrument you owned or the first decent-quality instrument you owned.

Over a decade ago, Fender Artist Relations honcho Mark Wittenberg (now deceased--R.I.P.) practically freaked out at the VINTAGE GUITAR booth at a Pomona vintage show when we had Jeff Beck's Yardbirds-era Esquire on display there, exclaiming "That's the instrument that made me want to play guitar!"

Accordingly, I'd think most guitars that started players on their respective musical journeys would have been celebrity-associated instruments. For me, it was Eric Clapton's psychedelic SG; methinks I've noted here before that the first picture I ever saw of Clapton was in CIRCUS (or maybe it was still HULLABALOO back then), where he was wearing aviator sunglasses, had an obligatory Hendrix perm, and that guitar. An encaustic visual moment, soon followed by an encaustic aural moment, the first time I ever heard "Sunshine of Your Love" (that was probably the case for a lotta Boomers, who'd never heard Clapton in the Bluesbreakers or on FRESH CREAM, or didn't know it was him on certain Yardbirds songs).

I've managed to play the aforementioned Esquire, the first Fender electric Spanish guitar ever made, and the Peter Green/Gary Moore Les Paul---I got the willies playing all of those (particularly the Les Paul) but would get just as intense a case if I ever played that Clapton SG---although he used a 3-p.u. LP Custom on DISARELI GEARS as well. But that one instrument is what made me want to play guitar, period.

Anybody wanna nail down a singular guitar that started something that has lasted (for you) a long time? What and why?

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The clarinet was my inspiration. I hated the thing, but my Dad had laid out $65 bucks and by damn I was going to learn how to make music with it. Worked out OK in the end, I learned how to put musical passages together so when I could afford to do what I wanted to do I had a small leg up on guitar.

Edited to add:

I have yet to have a chick ask what kind of clarinet I have.

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I actually wanted to be a piano player at first 'cause I loved Barry Manilow (yup) and Elton John. But for guitar, without a doubt Ace Frehley's Cherry Sunburst Gibson Les Paul Custom.

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First? The Chet Atkins Gretsch "Country Gentleman"

From there, all of the Beatles guitars (and basses) then Rick Nielsen's Hamers.

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Guest pirateflynn

After seeing The Last Waltz with my dad I was smitten by the Stratocasters Robby Robertson and Bob Dylan played.

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As a kid, I saw Paul Stanley playing a white Explorer on Don Kirshner's

Rock Concert. I'd been a a huge fan of KISS for a couple of years at

that point, but I'd never seen an Explorer before. Then when I seen

his PS-10 Iceman, I was head over heels.

Also when I seen Joe Perry on the California Jam II show, that played

every Saturday evening over the summer of '78, I seen his red Bich.

BOING!!!

And Ace's tobacco burst Les Paul just sealed the deal.

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As a shorty in 3rd grade it was Ace's LP. When I started playing in 7th grade MTV was new and the Journy concert was in heavy rotation. I loved Neal's black Floyded LP Standard. Gary Richrath and Aldo Nova had some sweet flametops. Uncle Ricks checkerboard Standard was very cool. Also loved Niel Giraldo's BC Riches too. Can't forget the Foghat concert and Rod Price's blue Strat.

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Sunburst Jazzmaster on the cover of an old (then) Ventures album that one of my sister's friends left at our house (this was about 1974 and I still have the album along with a bunch more the guy left)

When I bought my first real guitar in 78 I got a refinished 63 Jazzmaster for $200 and the guy threw in a Princeton Reverb. I still have the Princeton and traded the Jazzmaster for a 70's Tele Deluxe in about 1988.

All those Ventures albums also made me have a fetish for Mosrite guitars, even though I have never owned one.

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I've told the story several times before about when my brother came home with this record that, he said, I "HAD to listen to."

Jeff Beck's "Wired" was the record that made we want to play guitar, and the white Strat on the cover is the guitar. Maybe that's why I have always been magnetically drawn to the Stratocaster.

This is also the perfect album cover, by the way.

Slicker than eel shit.

B00005AREP.01._SS500_SCLZZZZZZZ_V37084744_.jpg

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Pagey's Burst...

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Man, where to I start. I would have to say that the first time I saw Slash throw his Les Paul over the cliff that was it for me. Begged for 3 years for my first guitar. ( It wasn't a Les Paul) Oddly enough I still don't own one. HUH?! Got a couple of hamers though, Thanks RICK!

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Clapton's Blackie and Brownie Strats. My first real guitar was a black fender strat that i started to mod into a clapton sig series with the lace sensors.... unfortunately it got swiped... I miss that guitar

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Pagey's Burst...

Me, too.

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'nuther vote for Slash here. At the tail end of 7th grade, the video for Paradise City was on like every 20 minutes it seemed. I'd have to go over to my friend's house to watch MTV as he was the only kid we knew who had MTV at the time, but I was mesmerized by Slash's burst & Izzy's Custom.

I had to have a Les Paul. It's been down hill ever since.

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There were a couple that hit me more or less simultaneously. At least they were within a few months of each other and more or less ganged up on me in a "cumulative effect" sort of way. The first was Chet Atkins' prized Del Vecchio that he used on several cuts on "My Favorite Guitars", the first record I ever bought with my own money. One of the guys in the Coasters played guitar and I remember an album cover of theirs with him holding a P-90 Goldtop (Every cover I ever saw of theirs had him holding an LP, I think). Toss in James Burton's Tele on the tail end of the Ozzie and Harriet show, and I was hooked. I used to watch the show just for Ricky's bit at the end, featuring James. I started bugging my folks for a guitar right about then. By the time the Beatles played Ed Sullivan (my 12th birthday), I was working out Walk, Don't Run and some thing by Peter Paul and Mary that my sister showed me.

I had been playing piano since age 4, but it was obvious to me that I wasn't gonna get any chicks by sauntering down the street with a piano slung over my shoulder.... :lol:

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Ace's Les Paul. No question.

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Not super original, apparently, but Ace Frehley's 3 pickup LP. When I first opened up "Alive II" in 6th Grade, that one grabbed my attention. My first good guitar was a Cherry Sunburst LP Custom that I still have (it just looks a little different now...)

ace_1977.jpg

Right after that, it was Rick N's Standards. And blue Greco Iceman. And Korina Flying Vee. (and so on, and so on...)

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gibLP75p1.jpg

Keith Richards playing this LP Custom on the cover of the Gibson catalog.

This photo and my love of the Stones was IT for me.

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Hmm, strangely I didn't start paying any attention to gear until several years after I started playing. There are lots of guitarists I idolize, but I don't really have any sort of nostalgic attachment to the gear they played. Good news for my wallet I guess.

Austin

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whatever guitar roy rogers was playing

This one? Roy%20Rogers%20with%20guitar.pdd.jpg

This budget model? 3114.jpg

This limited edition?

RRsmheadst.jpgrrclose.jpgrrdown.jpg

He sure liked Trigger!

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Steve Vai (Imitated by Ralph Machio) in Crossroads. I just loved the look of the Telecaster.

That Paganini based showstopper at the end hooked me forever. :lol:

I still practice with it to this day.

Ry Cooders playing is awesome as well.

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After all the songs and bands that played in the 70's and the 80's, Nothing affected me until the late 70's early 80's. That' when I got gas. "the instrument that started it all"? Two pictures. They weren't action shots or anything that really got to me.

The first one was a picture next to the song "Big Eyes" in the booklet as a mini concert guide for Cheap Trick Like At Budokan. It is a picture of Rick with something in his mouth with him waving his hands frantically like he is going into shock with the foreground being the Greco RN Model, the famous Zandard, and some other off brand guitars all containing checkerboard straps. BINGO!

The second one was a picture of Rick in bed with Tom P looking over him. I am not sure where that photo came from but he is acting like he is sleeping with the guitars. I think the Mandocello, some LP's and the Greco along with others are all there. BAM! Zonk! Pow!

Forget my first concert. The damn guy changed guitars after every song. I just though everyone must do this. But when he brought out this Red Flying Vee with a bigsby, and he said, "I just had to bring this to Texas" the place went nuts. I don't even remember the song. All I remembered was the Vee and everything being checkerboard.

I have never been the same.

Hamerica

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