First of all I apologise to those of you who are non-musicians, as some of this post involves musical instruments: well, ok - all of it.
But it's more of a history of my involvement with guitars than just about music - so I hope you will bear with me.
I first realised that I wanted to learn guitar when I was about 11 years old, but a couple of things stopped me. Firstly junior school (ages 7-10) had left me with a deep seated fear of putting myself forward and speaking to teachers (maybe i'll tell you about it one day), secondly nobody wants to be seen as a swot and young boys just don't volunteer for extra tuition and finally because in a whole two years of music we saw one Xylophone once.
The rest of the time was spent with our teacher staring at us over a cup of coffee, calling us "people" and asking us to be quiet.
So it was only when I left school that I started lessons aged 17. I guess this was because I was working with some people who were in a band at the time. Sadly their works have been lost to the ages of time and I may now be the only person who owns a recording of their songs (although I did find the singer on Facebook and gave her a copy about a year ago)
I no longer own any of my first guitars: I started off with a classical guitar, but soon found the neck too wide. For my 18th birthday (which was mumble-jumble-wumble years ago) I was given a silver Marlin "slammer" electric guitar. I part-exchanged this about 10 years ago for my current electric on the grounds that the body was very heavy and the pickup was never great, but sometimes I do regret giving it away.
Guitar #1: Dobo semi-acoustic
I bought this from my guitar teacher around 1990ish. The school where I was doing evening classes seemed to change teacher every term, so our lessons were a bit inconsistent to say the least. The teacher, Steve, used to change the titles of the songs he was teaching slightly to try and avoid copyright issues: so we learnt "Dancing In The Park" and that kind of thing.
Again the pick-up is sadly broken on this guitar - the man at the shop assures me it would cost too much to repair, but I still practice with this at home.
Guitar #2: Fender Stratocaster
Technically: not my guitar. In fact it's very much my brother's guitar. He took a few lessons about the same time I was learning, but never really followed through and can only play a couple of chords. When I finally get my house repaired I'd like to give this a home, clean it up, replace the strings and play it - the "whammy bar" (don't ask me what it's really called) is a bonus that none of my others have - so it would come in useful as a back-up
Guitar #3 - Peavey Bass
Around 1997 I got involved with amateur theatre for a while - something that eventually led to me meeting my partner (and I may tell that story one day too). To be honest it was a lot of work for not much fun - but the show I enjoyed the most was Return To The Forbidden Planet - a musical based on a combination of The Tempest and the movie Forbidden Planet.
I had the small, but vital, role of Third Bloke From The Left and my responsibilities were playing guitar and bass, looking startled and singing occasional backing vocals. I bought the Bass specifically for the show.
To be honest the only time I play it at the moment is when I'm recording - but when I do I like to pretend I'm Peter Hook (Bass player from New Order) and hang it as low as I can without hitting the floor
Guitar #4 - Current Electric
This is my current electric guitar (I'm sorry, I forgot to make a note of the make), which I bought around 2000 with some money left to me by my Nan (mother's side). Currently in storage at my mum's house until the house is in better condition I'm very fond of this one and it has a great tone.
Guitar #5 - Semi-Acoustic
This is on permanent loan from my partner's-sister's-partner. I initially turned it down on loan as I already had several guitars, but came to regret the decision. When it became clear that the person who had the guitar simply wasn't using it I claimed it back, re-strung it and have been regularly playing since.
Hopefully, assuming I get myself sorted, some lyrics will follow later in the week :)