Hot guitar porn is no fantasy

Posted by David Konow

I'm a big fan of what's often termed "guitar porn," meaning great gear, the hottest guitars and amps you can get. 



Whenever I'm in a music store, which is often, like fantasy baseball, I do fantasy guitar buying, looking at everything I can't afford (which is indeed just about everything in the store), and dream of the day I can load up my car with cool sh*t and not have to check my wallet.

Hot guitar porn is no fantasyWith the economy in such bad shape, I've found it amazing that rare guitars are still doing great, and current boutique gear is still doing well as well.

The reason I've been told is that with today's economy those who could afford all this hot sh*t can still afford it, even though a lot of rich people are much less wealthy these days. Still, the desire for a great, state of the art guitar has never died out, much like people will always lust over sports cars.
 
Norman Harris is the premier deals of vintage instruments, and he recently told me that he's been buying and selling guitars since 1967, and that he's never had a bad year.

Bob Dyland and Joan Baez

There wasn't even the term "vintage guitar" when he first started out buying old guitars, and when George Harrison first came to him for instruments, he knew there was a market for this stuff. Since then, the greatest guitarists and musicians in rock history from Eddie Van Halen, to Bob Dylan, to Tom Petty, to anyone else you can name have come to Norm.

Recently, I also wrote about the holy grail of guitars, the '59 Les Paul, which can cost anywhere from $100 to $500 K, and as renowned studio guitarist Steve Lukather told me, his '59 Les Paul, which he bought for $4,000 in a little music store in Arizona is currently valued at $3-500,000. (Eddie Van Halen also has two '59s he bought from Norm for about $5-6,000 each, which are now worth $100,000 and $400,000).

Gibson Les PaulLukather told Made Loud $4,000 in 1979 "seemed a fortune" at the time. "I knew I needed to have one. I even bought it a seat on the plane to bring it home. It was my #1 go-to guitar for a long time."

And indeed Lukather played his '59 on Toto's Rosanna, Michael Jackson's Beat It, sessions with Paul McCartney, and more.
 
But Norm told L.A. Weekly there's plenty of guitars that haven't been maxed out in the market you can buy that will double their worth in ten years, like the Fender Jaguar, which Kurt Cobain revived, and guitars can make a good investment because a lot of people don't know where to put their money in these current economic times. (Harris also feels the Gibson reissues that can recreate classic guitars very closely through modern technology are 85-90% as good as the originals).
 
Again, I love looking at all this stuff like paintings in a museum, drooling over guitar porn in magazines, and imagining what all of this would feel like in my hands, and look standing around in my home. Yes, all this stuff is still what I call fantasy guitar buying, but hey, I can dream, can't I?