I have my mother to thank for my guitar obsession.
She gave up a lot, so that I could learn to play.
Mum could identify with my desire to make music as she was musical herself, not highly skilled, but passionate.
Way back in the early 1970's she was learning guitar from some local artist, or friend (I'm not 100% on the details). Anyway she learned to play on a frying pan with strings down the handle. Obviously this wasn't ideal as the scale was all wrong, a distinct lack of frets and no way to tune it.
My father, a music lover, but not a player, decided that he would remedy the situation and spent the princely sum for $20 on a Valencia 3/4 sized nylon string guitar.
For years, mum told me that she always wanted two things, an electric drill and a steel string acoustic.
I never got around to getting her the drill, but when I was 17 I inherited some money from my step-grandfather and decided to buy mum the guitar.
I wanted it to be good, and I wanted it to be Australian.
What else was a boy to do, but buy a Maton?
The guitar store in the adjacent town had a whole shipment come in when I was looking to buy, so I went though seven or eight guitars before I found one that I liked. It's a modest looking dreadnought shape. The tone was bright, but not too bright and the neck was very nice. I think it cost $900 including the case.
Not sure what that would translate to now.
She loved the guitar, but was too scared to play it (or something like that).
I played it a fair bit, but it was hers.
At some later point, I came into possession of a a12 string acoustic.
We did a trade or something, I don't really remember the details as a lot was going on at the time.
I moved interstate and everything was a bit of a blur.
Some years down the track, something regrettable happened to the guitar. It had already suffered a broken tuner, but in a drunken mistake, a hot pizza was placed on the guitar and this caused the finish to whiten.
The guitar still sounds fine, but the finish is ruined.
One of these days I'll have to get it refinished, but for now it sees little action.
Sadly my mother succumbed to lung cancer in late 2010, but I will always have the memories of her encouragement in my pursuit of learning an instrument. She is and will continue to be missed.