PICTURE TUNEFUL PERFECT WEATHER marked the weekend of the inaugural Guitar Player Live! 2009 event in Livermore, CA, September 11-13. A crowd estimated at 30,000+ jammed into this East-Bay vineyard suburb to celebrate guitars - the instruments, the players, the sounds and the vibe that happens when you musically stir it all together!
The Friday-night ShredFest hosted by Shrapnel Records was a total success, per the comments of 'whoa, that was TOOLOUD in there!' - which echoed the musical charge that carried the opening day. Next day, Saturday night, played out to the Guitar Player Superstar competition, where over 50,000 hopefuls were distilled to 10 finalists for an onstage showdown. The judges were all from Rock Royalty: Elliot Easton (former The Cars), Jennifer Batten (played extensively with Michael Jackson and Jeff Beck), Steve Lukather (founding member of Toto), and more. Know what? All the finalists were great players... a few were jaw-dropping astonishing... yet it was finally Steve Senes of South Carolina that blew the doors off the rest and commanded the title as Guitar Player Superstar, 2009. Voyage-Air Guitar had a huge presence as a Presenting Sponsor of this guitar-centric event. And it's no exaggeration to say that... wherever you looked in downtown Livermore, someone was toting a Voyage-Air backpack guitar case. YES - they sound that good, and YES they are that easy to carry!
Over the weekend, Voyage-Air CEO Jeff Cohen displayed his $125,000 museum-quality 'Samurai' Voyage-Air guitar. Hand-crafted from the finest tone woods, and with over 500 hours of painstaking inlay work by the world-famous Harvey Leach, this one-of-a-kind instrument proved there are no upward price bounds for folding travel guitars - and WOW - what a tone from this guitar! Other notable manufacturers had displays at the event, with names such as Taylor Guitar, Mesa Boogie, Line 6, Moog, and many more. Dozens of display tents were packed with guitar-related wares, with pins, hats, T-shirts, miniature guitars, collector's records and autographed material. Oh yeah: a unanimous 'thumbs-up' on the samplings of local wines and beers throughout the town. Two Voyage-Air guitars were awarded as prizes: one to Steve Senes, as winner and Guitar Player Superstar, 2009. A drawing was held for the other, and was won by Mr. Don Pitt: a Livermore local known for his selfless contributions to events and charities throughout the area. A fitting prize, and a fitting cap to the six-string Guitar Player Live! 2009 weekend. We'll see you at the next event! Watch the video, click here