Since Nashville is home to thousands of songwriters and guitar players, it makes sense that Music City would also be the location of some well-known vintage guitar dealers. And while not all of us can afford a collectible vintage Gibson or Martin or other historic model, they sure are fun to try out in the showrooms and talk about with other pickers in Guitar Town.
Gruhn Guitars, opened in 1970 by George Gruhn, and Carter’s Vintage Guitars, owned by Walter and Christie Carter, are the stores of Nashville’s best-known vintage guitar dealers. While Gruhn doesn‘t boast about his clientele, he doesn’t need to. Stringed instruments from his shop, both acoustic and electric, have been used by literally hundreds of legends of guitardom over the past 44 years. Names like Clapton, Paisley, Knopfler, Gill, Gibbons and others come up in any conversation about who’s playing a guitar that Gruhn has touched at one time or another. In the end, though, the question has to be asked: Does a guitar always sound that much better just because it’s old?