A host of classic fretted instruments plus some surprising oddities. The guitar, mandolin and banjo families come alive in the gorgeous color pictures, not to mention the studies on wood structure, acoustic tone, the psychology of collecting plus info on building and maintaining a collection. An invaluable resource!
Robert C. Hartman, Author, The Larsons’ Creations Guitars and Mandolins
Matt Woods’ stupendous tome sets a new precedent for what can be achieved by the passionate and serious fretted stringed instrument collector in the private sector. While it presents a highly personal collection, the collecting methodology is part and parcel of the presentation and forms a unique component rarely discussed so openly. On a perhaps more vital topic, Woods has painstakingly analyzed and documented seemingly every physical and aural inch of nearly 200 different instruments. Equal parts eye candy, scientific study and invaluable history this is a stunning labor-of-love “overachievement” that makes my brain overdose with every turn of the page!
Gregg Miner, Grove contributor and curator of the Miner Museum of Vintage, Exotic & Just Plain Unusual Musical Instruments
Wow, this book is hours of fun. Tremendous eye candy for those that love vintage instruments and the detailed analysis of their histories, structures and tonal characteristics make it more than just a beautiful coffee table book: the amount of useful information in this book is encyclopedic.
Wake Clinard, Steel Guitarist for “The Grand Ole Uproar”
The lovely last page of this remarkable compendium explains a lot about the odd obsession that drives a few of us to guitar acquisition. It is a stunning picture of the Milky Way Galaxy and a not so subtle reminder of what a small and insignificant little planet we live on, how short life is, and the obvious implication: follow your dreams. This is something that Matt Woods has done. It differs from other books of this ilk, not just the standard coffee table book full of instrument pics, but also the story of their creation, derivation and the musical time periods that inspired them. It is these stories that truly make collectible things fascinating, and elevates them beyond the category of just 'stuff' or investments. The author’s obvious curiosity and fascination with vintage instruments has rewarded us with an informative and very entertaining guide. The bottom line: playing, collecting and studying old guitars and the like can be one mark of a life well lived, and here is a blue print to go about it!
Kennard Machol, Intermountain Guitar and Banjo
I have a number of books and resources of, for, and about acoustic instruments but nothing even close to your work. This book needs to be in the hands of every serious acoustic player, collector, or admirer.
Frank D. Ray, mandolin player, singer, songwriter and recording artist with Cedar Hill
This book is a blast. Good information and great photography. The writing is excellent and very easy to understand. The quality of the book is outstanding. Definitely presentation grade, and would make a fantastic gift for any acoustic instrument geek. If you love acoustic instruments, it is a must have for your library. This book is not an exhaustive treatment on every manufacturer by any means, but it has examples from many with interesting details and background. It also features great ephemera, such as brochures and catalog entries. Buy the danged thing and have fun with it (or let someone know what a great gift it would make for you). It will give you many hours of enjoyment and will remain on your shelf as a great reference for years to come.
Brian Murphy, Greer, South Carolina