Photographer Lisa S. Johnson captures the story behind rock’s most iconic axes owned by Page, Beck, Gibbons, and others—with commentary from the guitarists themselves.

Zakk Wylde - 1981 Gibson Les Paul "The Grail"

"In the days before Zakk teamed up with Ozzy, he received this guitar as a gift from his parents. Its original crème finish made it virtually indistinguishable from a Les Paul favored by Randy Rhoads (RIP). Out of respect for Randy, Zakk refinished the guitar with the bull's eye pattern featured on movie posters for Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo." -Lisa S. Johnson, 108 Rock Star Guitars


About fifteen years ago, Lisa S. Johnson was working as a technical sales representative for Kodak. In order to gain a greater knowledge of Kodak's product line, she bought her own professional grade camera equipment and began shooting still images in her spare time. As fate would have it, one night she found herself at the Iridium Jazz Club in New York, the Monday night court of one, Les Paul. The always-gracious Paul allowed Johnson to photograph his guitars, which, unbeknownst to either of them, sent Johnson on a quest that would span years and send her far and wide in search of guitar players old and new.

The culmination of that journey is available now. 108 Rock Star Guitars is a 396-page, leather-bound behemoth brimming with beautiful, elegant images of some of the most iconic and recognized instruments the world has ever known. The subjects who allowed their most prized possessions to be photographed by Johnson reads like a veritable who's who of rock guitar royalty. More than that though, Johnson's work is threaded with personal stories detailing her own epic adventure to discover and celebrate these wondrous instruments. It wasn't always easy, but it came out looking oh, so good.

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