The Lost Guitar

27 Feb

You were so desperate.

And you were young, and foolish, too.

No money.  No direction.  No girlfriend.  No job.  No idea.

But you had a guitar.  A beautiful guitar.

She was a Gibson hollow-body electric.

She gleamed.  Sunburst top.  Burned orange middle, fading out to chocolate and then to black around the edges.

Pick guard pleasantly curved, black, and raised off the body.

This was a guitar Muddy Waters would have been proud to play.

But you were too proud to play it.  Because it was given to you by your father.  And his shadow was still keeping you too cool.

Was that why you sold her that day, in that rundown corner pawnshop on Guilford Street?

Or was it really just out of sheer need of money?  We’ll never know.

But what we do know is that the desire to have that old guitar back has burned for twenty-one years now.  And we also know that it will never go out… because we will never find that lost guitar.

Every Livingston man has a lost-guitar story.  Tim probably has a dozen of them.

Mike’s is among the most heart-wrenching.  He lost a Martin D-35.  Someone stole it from his parked car, at a music concert, I believe.

But my story breaks the heart… because I lost a gift from my father, in a fit of shortsighted desperation.  I gave her away for a few hundred dollars.

And now she’s gone.

But in this song, I retell the tale.  And in this version, the ending is not so sad as it might sound in the music.  If I have made the music right, that is.

This song is called The Lost Guitar.  And it’s for Dad.

4 Responses to “The Lost Guitar”

  1. Rose March 6, 2010 at 7:41 pm #

    You have just made my day … interesting how you are your father’s son after all. Great storyteller, poetic, and a wonderful sense of humor. Much love. I’ll give you a call.

    • The Publisher March 9, 2010 at 6:01 am #

      Thanks Rosie! That means so much. Especially coming from you – the best singer in the family, hands down. Let’s talk and get together soon – Nate’s having Aunt Rosie withdrawals! Love ya…

  2. Tim March 15, 2010 at 4:37 am #

    Really great stuff. Roll Your Own is as good as it gets stylistically. It’s a sound that will inspires me. Your writing rings true. Way to go. Blew me away.

    Love Tim

    • The Publisher March 15, 2010 at 5:04 am #

      Thanks Tim – great to talk to you today! You know you’re my songwriting mentor, so get ready for some long phonecalls… and late nights of playing this summer! I’m bringing the Martin, baby. Love ya. J

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