Last week I was standing around with a couple musicians of minimal acquaintance when one asked me what was my favorite guitar. It was a hard question, because I've gone through a period of not playing and because choosing one guitar is like choosing one child over the others.
I have some that are beautiful instruments; some that appeal to my sense of whimsy and experimentation; some that just sound great; some that evoke strong associations; some that...
Well, I should've known that the question was only a preamble to his telling me about his newest acquisition. But today, the answer presented itself: this '20s vintage Regal tenor guitar with banjo tuners.
Regal was a budget brand, and this guitar is pretty basic. Its top has a crack. No collector is going to salivate over it. But it's one of three guitars I keep within reach. Tuned to an inverted D chord — DADF# — it puts music under my fingers in a way nothing else does.
I don't play it. It plays me.