Vince Herman of Great American Taxi, backstage in Morgantown, WV
On any given Sunday, it’s safe to say that the Mountain Stage crew will see its share of road-worn instruments come through the loading dock. But back in March when we visited Morgantown, we were a bit taken with wear on Great American Taxi’s Vince Herman’s Santa Cruz dreadnaught-style guitar. Not so much by the amount of it (of which there was a lot), but because the guitar was even that old.
Make no mistake though, this isn’t one of those pre-aged “relic” guitars that have become fashionable over the past few years. This is what a few hundred shows a year really looks like (depending on your playing style, of course).
Vince Herman's Santa Cruz guitar
Note numerous cracks in the finish (sometimes politely referred to as “spider webbing” by aficionados), and the dark areas above the strings and below the pickguard that have been preemptively filled with super glue to prevent Vince from wearing completely through the wood
Pick it, son.
If you want to see Vince Herman in action, check out this video of Great American Taxi performing their song “Appalachian Soul” live on Mountain Stage, and you can listen to their entire set (along with many other Mountain Stage guests) at NPR Music.
Go out and see some live music wherever you are.