They went by the name of Martin, Gibson, Taylor and Fender. Some of them old and dry, with the sweet, nuanced voices that come with age. Others were brand new and eager to find their own voice.
There is something about vintage guitars that can draw a crowd, and the crowd kept streaming into the Elmira Lions Hall for the seventh annual Elmira Vintage Guitar Show. Show proprietor, organizer and guitar lover, John Woods, said 250 people queued up before the doors opened at 11 a.m., and he expected over 800 to attend.
The eight buck entry fee gave guitar folks the pleasure of ogling, stroking, strumming and purchasing classic acoustic and electric guitars, some priced as high as $10,000. The venue was so packed in the early going that there were bottlenecks humans forming in the aisles.
“People are passionate about guitars,” said Woods. “There are not a lot of places where they can go and see a room full of used vintage and classic guitars, where they can add to their collection or swap something they have.”
About 15 vendors – the vendor tables were sold out – offered a diverse array of instruments, some classic, increasingly valuable American guitars in all body types, and some Asian-made collectibles that riffed off or ripped off the American models in the 60s, 70s, and 80s. The vendors came from as far east as Montreal and as far west as Windsor.
And there were also sellers of new instruments, including the European Furch/Stonebridge line, and shiny Gretsch and Danelectro models.
A large contingent of guitar aficionados made the 30 km country drive from Guelph to take in the show.