I may have written a post about my guitar before. But I'm too lazy to check this, and I have CRS anyway, so it's possible that this first part of the post is redundant. If I've told you this before, bear with me. I own a Silvertone 1220 jumbo flat top guitar, manufactured for Sears by the Harmony corporation. My wife Joyce gave it to me as a birthday gift back in 1968 when I was 28 years old.
I think my old Silvertone cost about $69 or $70 when new. It's in pretty good shape for its age and for all the rough treatment it has received over the years from grandkids, cast party participants, etc. I don't have a good picture of it, but here's one that looks just like it, color, pickguard, bridge, nut, tuning pegs, and everything else as well.
I'm absolutely not an accomplished guitarist. I just make the basic 5 or 6 chords and can pick out a few (very few) melodies. But I've really enjoyed this old acoustic AXE over the years. It increased my love of music and in particular helped grow my love of (and lust for) all guitars. My old Silvertone led me to appreciate the fine quality and workmanship of factory made instruments like Martin and Gibson, and those smaller independent operations like Forbus Hand Made Guitars for example, whose shop is in Belfast, Tennessee, about 70 miles from Nashville. And Kent Everett's custom acoustic guitar shop down in Atlanta. Follow the links and take a look at some of these guys' fantastic creations.
(Side note: My good buddy Ed's son is a luthier and besides doing repair work on fine guitars has crafted some excellent dulcimers which I've examined, and some guitars which I haven't yet seen. I was amazed at the precision and craftsmanship of the dulcimers; I can't imagine where someone develops the patience and skill to do that kind of close and delicate work? It's certainly beyond me.)
Since I was about ten years old, I've loved to read, especially fiction. That year my uncle Sid gave me a copy of the Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery. I was hooked. I began to read other stories about baseball players and cowboys and soldiers. By the time I was twelve or thirteen, I was totally immersed in Science Fiction, particularly the juvenile stories of Robert Heinlein, such as Space Cadet and Red Planet. I liked Asimov too, and Clarke, and anyone else who could spin a good yarn.
I began trying to write fiction myself in the '80s and finished a couple of manuscripts, one spy thriller and a mystery. The spy novel was at first conditionally accepted by Zebra but then three months later, the imprint was taken over by another publisher and my manuscript was returned. Que sera.
I finished some other mystery manuscripts in the '90s and when I retired, began and finished a couple of political satires (one of those was Liberalstein). After that I spent several months revising the manuscript that became Blood Country.
To start with, the cover of Blood Country features a classic Gibson SG solid body electric guitar. (That's a picture of a Gibson SG below and just below that on the right is a picture of the SG on my book cover.) Even though the novel is set in Nashville and its country music industry, the SG is usually associated with rock musicians.
There are some other guitars in the book as well. My private eye, Joe Rose, is also a guitar sideman. He owns several guitars but the one he uses in several scenes is an old 1940 Martin D-18. Why a '40 model? It's kinda silly but 1940 was the year I was born. Maybe my hidden motive was to suggest that something made in 1940 could still make good music, or in my case, a good mystery novel.
An old Martin like this is also probably way too expensive for me, but it's not too much of an investment for a pro sideman. By having Rose own and use it, I get to vicariously enjoy it myself.
Here's a You Tube video of a guy playing a 1940 Martin D-18, like the one I imagined Joe Rose would play in my novel. Notice that though the color is different, the shape and pick guard look a lot like my old Silvertone. The video guy is a pretty danged good picker too.
There are some nice pictures of the Elvis Gibson Dove guitar here but image downloading at the site was blocked which prevented me from putting in a picture of the guitar I had in mind for Vern. So, I found this You Tube video of a guy playing Japanese manufacturer Aspen's copy of the Gibson Dove. This one is the Aspen Dove DH32. It looks almost exactly like Elvis' Gibson and the guy playing it makes it ring like a bell. Listen closely and you'll hear a little "House of the Rising Sun" creep in there.
I have lust in my heart for these fine guitars (even the Aspen copy). But this stuff is kinda like a marriage to me. And I'm still happily bound and committed to my old Silvertone 1220.
P. S. I'm still selling the Kindle edition of Blood Country for $.99. You can also buy a paperback copy for $17.95.
Click on the copy of the book near the top of the left column and you'll be linked to my amazon page where you can choose either the Kindle or the paper copy of Blood Country.