An expansive collection of vignettes of seminal guitarists telling how they first planted the playing seed.

My First Guitar: Tales of True Love ...
by Julia Crowe
ECW Press


Julia Crowe has quite a concept in this expansive collection of vignettes of seminal guitarists telling how they first planted the playing seed. The author describes how the book was conceived, her younger self boarding a flight to meet Jimmy Page in London for a cup of coffee—but she lets him, and the other players, do most of the talking.

Crowe (guitarist, composer, journalist, and teacher) impressively executes heartfelt storytelling gleaned from hundreds of interviews with the “who’s who” of players (Dick Dale, Seymour Duncan, Alex Lifeson, Albert Lee, Scotty Moore, Steve Vai, etc.), and she delivers the goods in unique first-person accounts. Les Paul recounts acquiring a $3.95 Sears-Roebuck guitar after his mother gave him grief for playing piano (“it’s not convenient”) and the drums (“she immediately ordered that out of the house”). The rest is history, as they say, but this book is testament. It’s not just about the first guitars or the players themselves, really. It’s much more: the follow-up from that first chance meeting—that coming-of-age experience with music. This is life, told and celebrated through guitars. —Tessa Jeffers

Iriondo has been a member of the Italian alt-rock outfit Afterhours since 1992. Here he’s playing a custom Epiphone SG Custom at an Afterhours show in 2015.

Photo by Emanuela Bonetti

The Italian maestro talks about the spiritual inspiration he draws from his Basque roots, as well as channeling his endless guitar-tinkering passions into his latest musical project, Buñuel.

Italian guitarist and sonic adventurer Xabier Iriondo has an affinity for the Basque term, metak—which literally means, “pile”—and he often incorporates it into the names of his various projects. His custom-built experimental guitar is the Mahai Metak (or “table pile”). Some of his unconventional musical collaborations also include the term, as in PhonoMetak and PhonoMetak Labs. And Sound Metak was the name of the eclectic shop he ran for about a decade in the early 2000s, which sold everything from boutique guitar pedals to shoes. (Check out his Instagram profile, which, in addition to pictures of his amazing collection of guitars, pedals, and vintage amps, is also a showcase for his impeccable taste in footwear).

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Megadeth founder teams up with Gibson for his first acoustic guitar in the Dave Mustaine Collection.

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The Atlas Compressor offers up an extensive library of compression options and allows for transformation into a bass specific compression machine.


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