No, I'm not a guitarist. I have always been fascinated by the instrument, though. Also being in love with all things shiny, and having hung out in music stores since a young age, I have made a point over the last three years of going to the Montreal Guitar Show, one of the biggest guitar expositions in North America. It was created to coincide with the Jazz Festival, having now spawned its own award and its own sub-series of programming.
The show is split into two large conference rooms at the Hyatt: one of electric guitars (with soundproofed booths with boutique amplifiers), and one of acoustics (also with soundproofed module studios). Of the electrics, I got to lay my hands on Mike Potvin's Ranchero Grande Thinline - I've always had a thing for Thinline Telecaster-style guitars - and Kauer Guitars' Daylighter, both of which played amazingly for this non-guitarist. I wish I remembered the name of the amp I played them through. One guitar I played a couple of years ago, and still covet, is Marc Lupien's Convertible, presented again this year in all its glory. James Trussart's instruments looked far too intimidating and beautiful for this pretender to pick up and play.
I didn't spend as much time in the acoustic side, but I did see Batson Guitars' flat-fronted offerings, and a beautiful luthier from Tijuca, Fernando Bernardo. I've also been nursing an obsession over lap steels, so I was happy to refresh myself with the work of Joseph Yanuziello, and really wanted to check out Bill Asher's work.