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The guitar is the single most enduring icon in American history.

Not baseball, not football, not hamburgers, not soda, not sports cars . . . the guitar. Yet there is no museum in the world dedicated to the history, evolution, and cultural impact of the guitar. There is a barbecue museum, there is a barbwire museum, there is a ventriloquist dummy museum, and even a teacup museum . . . but there is no single museum dedicated to the world’s most popular instrument.

Until now.

The guitar is about more than just popular music. The guitar is an integral part of American history. The first guitars were brought here by the Spanish in the late 1500s, and the English brought their own versions on the boats that followed the Mayflower. It has been part of our heritage for longer than almost any other cultural icon. Every year, there are over 3 million guitars sold in United States alone. That's more than all other instruments combined.

The National GUITAR Museum was founded to promote and preserve the legacy of the guitar.
It is the world's first museum dedicated to the history, evolution, and cultural impact of the guitar.

The NGM launched a Touring Exhibition entitled "GUITAR: The Instrument That Rocked The World" that began with previews outside NYC in February 2011. The national rollout was in Orlando on June 11, 2011. The exhibit is now booked at sites across the country for the next several years. At the completion of the tour, one U.S. city will be chosen to become the permanent home of The National GUITAR Museum.

The goal of The National GUITAR Museum is to create the first institution devoted exclusively to the evolution, history, science, and cultural impact of the guitar.

The people at The National GUITAR Museum are all passionate about the guitar. We've assembled an incredible team of people to create the basis for what will become the first national museum to encompass and explore every element of the guitar--from its creation to its impact on modern culture. We have a wide-ranging partnership of people who are making the Museum a reality at a number of levels, from administration to artifact acquisition.


The following is a list of the Museum's creative team, as well as members of our advisory board.

Executive Director
HP Newquist

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An award-winning author, documentary director, broadcast producer, and the former Editor-in-Chief of GUITAR Magazine, HP Newquist oversees the development of The National GUITAR Museum and also serves as its chief curator. His unique background and experience have led to the creation of an innovative museum and a successful exhibition that is engaging, entertaining, and educational. During the course of his career, he has worked with hundreds of guitarists, written more than twenty books that have been translated into dozens of languages, and worked on making advanced technology an everyday reality. His direction of the NGM has attracted worldwide interest and support for the Museum. He is also chief executive of The Relayer Group, which develops projects for the museum and publishing industries.

Rich Maloof
Maloof is the founder of InTune, a magazine that goes beyond pop culture to explore the way that music is created, recorded, and produced. He was instrumental in the development of the original, GUITAR Magazine, and Musician's Planet, and has written numerous books and articles about the guitar. He is a noted guitar instructor, having developed video instruction programs for True Fire and books in "The Way They Play" series

Pete Prown
Founder of GUITAR SHOP Magazine and currently contributing editor at Vintage Guitar, Prown is one of the leading experts on the history of the guitar. He writes frequently on all aspects of the guitar, amplifiers, effects, and sound production, and is the author of several books on the guitar. He is also a prodigious recording artist, having produced, written—and performed on—the "Guitar Garden" releases.

Museum Advisors, Guitarists
Ritchie Blackmore

Legendary Guitarist, From Metal To Medieval. There are few guitarists who've traversed more guitar ground than Ritchie. From his work in pop groups in the early 1960s to his electrifying work with Deep Purple and Rainbow, on to his passion for Renaissance and medieval music in Blackmore's Night, few guitarists have been as experimental as Ritchie. His riff to "Smoke On The Water" may be the single most recognizable guitar piece since the invention of the electric guitar.

Liona Boyd

The First Lady of the Guitar. Liona has long been revered as an icon in the world of classical guitar. Liona has performed in venues all over the world, and her talents have resulted in five gold and three platinum albums, five Juno awards (Canada's equivalent of the Grammy), five honorary degrees, and The Order of Canada. She is also a five-time winner of the Guitar Player magazine poll for best classical guitarist and has been inducted into its "Gallery of Greats."

Steve Howe

Yes, Asia, Solo Artist. Steve is widely recognized as one of the best all-around guitarists of the past hundred years. He was voted Best Overall Guitarist in Guitar Player magazine five years in a row, and the first musician to be inducted into the magazine's "Gallery Of Greats." In addition to his work with Yes, Asia, GTR, and his solo records, he has appeared as a guest on numerous albums, in styles ranging from jazz and ragtime to pop and progressive rock. He is also a noted guitar collector.

Tony Iommi

Black Sabbath, Heaven And Hell, Solo Artist. Tony is recognized as the guitarist who almost single-handedly invented the genre of heavy metal. He is known worldwide as the founding guitarist and longest running member of Black Sabbath, and for songs such as “Iron Man,” “Paranoid,” and “Heaven And Hell.” While his riffs are amongst the most familiar ever played on the guitar, he has also helped push the physical evolution of the electric guitar, including innovations in pickup and string design.

Steve Vai

Solo Artist, Frank Zappa, Whitesnake, David Lee Roth. There is no doubt that Steve is one of the most unique and innovative guitar players to ever pick up the instrument. His proficiency on the instrument is second to none, making him one of the most in-demand guitarists anywhere since his early 20s. His collaborations are legendary, ranging from Johnny Rotten and Al Di Meola to his frequent G3 tours. He is also a passionate instructor, conducting master classes and workshops all over the world.

Johnny Winter
(in memoriam)

Legendary bluesman, Solo Artist. With a career spent melding Texas blues with rock and roll, Johnny created a legacy as the ultimate blues rocker. His performances in the 1960s, including Woodstock, brought gritty electric blues to national attention, and he continued to inspire guitarists right up until his death in 2014. Always a captivating frontman, Johnny also produced award winning albums by blues pioneer Muddy Waters. The NGM was honored to have worked with him.

Joe Bonamassa

Modern day blues rocker. Joe first made a name for himself in the band Bloodline, which released its debut album in 1994 when he was 17. Since then, he has carved a distinctive path that has made him one of the premiere electric guitarists playing rock and blues today. Bonamassa's ability to fuse blues, rock, prog and even jazz garnered him a "Best Overall Guitarist" award from Guitar Player Magazine this year, and his 2010 solo album, "Black Rock," debuted at #1 on the Billboard blues charts. Joe will serve as an NGM curator for vintage and unusual instruments.

Official Photographer
Neil Zlozower
Perhaps the most unique photographer in all of music, Zlozower has been shooting bands live and in studio for more than 30 years. His photos have graced album and CD covers, magazine covers, concert programs, and t-shirts all over the world. His newest book, "Six String Heroes,"  features more than 100 legendary guitarists.

Science & Technology, Engineering
Dr. Mark Lewney
Renowned physicist and winner of the FameLab competition, Dr. Lewney has done groundbreaking work on acoustics using the guitar as his inspiration. A popular lecturer due to his "guitar physics" presentations, his work has been featured by the BBC and in Science Magazine. His 3-minute video, dubbed "Einstein Meets Hendrix," is a must-see on YouTube. Dr. Lewney, who has a Ph.D in guitar physics from Cardiff University, is also a brilliant guitarist in his own right.

David B. Hill
Engineer and programming supervisor of the NGM's tech-driven elements—especially its touchscreen interactives and web based programs—Mr. Hill brings both technical skill and guitar knowledge to the NGM's operations. As the founder of David Hill & Company, he has overseen the development of programs used by organizations ranging from federal agencies to small businesses. Mr. Hill is also an avid guitarist and collector who hosts and coordinates guitar performance programs for acoustic musicians.

Gerard Huerta
Known for creating some of the most recognizable logos in music—including AC/DC's lightning bolt logo—Mr. Huerta is responsible for designing many of the most popular logo and type images in the world. In addition to creating the logos for Boston, Foreigner, Blue Oyster Cult, Ted Nugent, and a host of other bands, he has designed and updated the famous logos and brand identities for PEOPLE Magazine, Nabisco, Rolling Rock, Swiss Army Watches, Ringling Brothers, and dozens of other organizations. In addition to his design skills, Mr. Huerta is an accomplished guitarist and performer.

Jim Shinnick
Having overseen design for some of the biggest trade publications in the U.S. during the past two decades, Mr. Shinnick turned his skills to all areas of design and production with the founding of his New Moon Design studio. From book and web design to custom illustration and layout, Mr. Shinnick's studio turns out eye-catching visuals. The "guitar word cloud” design used for NGM's Traveling Exhibition was created by Mr. Shinnick, with New Moon putting every element of our tour into that one striking image (so much so that it is referred to as the “Shinnick Strat”). When not designing, Mr. Shinnick is often found performing with a guitar in hand.

Sharon Seidl
Ms. Seidl is an award-winning designer who has worked in all areas of media from magazines to mobile apps. Her early work with GUITAR Magazine and overseeing the re-design of PHOENIX Magazine (which then was cited for its graphic excellence) led to modern media creations including the design of interactive graphics within the NGM Traveling Exhibition and highly praised music apps for the iPad. Notable among these is “Blues Masters” and the biographical app featuring another NGM member, Johnny Winter. Ms. Seidl’s company, WIldly Engaging, is at the forefront of creating distinctive iPad and mobile apps for every interest imaginable.

Douglas Seirup
Mr. Seirup has worked in nearly every facet of film and commercial production, bringing a keen and focused eye to the development of the NGM's videos. He is the director of “Expect Miracles,” a documentary on the plight of families in Appalachia, and "Dogs On The Inside," about the rehabilitation of abandoned dogs by prison inmates. He has worked on other films including “3 Weeks To Daytona” and “Righteous Kill.”  Doug also oversees Expect Miracles Productions, a video production company.

Contact Info:
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Mojotone Musical Supply is one of America’s leading sources for vintage amplifiers & guitars parts. Mojo offers a complete line of guitar and amp products, specializing in vintage (pre-1980) reproduction cabinets and exact replacement components. The company also manufactures its own custom-wound pickups as well as custom amplifier and speaker cabinets in its U.S. factory. There is no better source for getting your gear parts than at Mojo. The company also hosts the Southeastern Guitar And Amp Show (SEGAS) in Raleigh, NC.

DGN Custom Guitars makes the innovative Paragon, a lightweight solidbody that delivers tone and feel that even heavier solidbodies can’t match. Each instrument is handmade, providing a unique alternative to mass-produced high-end guitars.

Gerard Huerta Design is a leading design firm specializing in all forms of graphics, from logos and lettering, to images and illustration. The company has worked with the biggest names in music and commerce, from AC/DC to Pepsi.

New Moon Design specializes in graphic design, production, and layout. From magazines and websites on to book production and custom illustration, New Moon has created stellar designs for clients across the country. The agency’s stellar track record on both national and local projects make it the perfect fit for businesses of any size.

For well over a century and a half, The Martin Guitar Company has been continuously producing acoustic instruments that are acknowledged to be among the finest in the world.

The NGM works in partnership with The Relayer Group LLC, a technology and entertainment company.

With the exception of the portrait of Liona and the Chip Tompkins photo of HP Newquist, these photographs were taken by NGM's official photographer, Neil Zlozower.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Every year for more than a decade, The National GUITAR Museum has given our “Lifetime Achievement Award” to a living guitarist who has contributed to the legacy of the guitar. The guidelines are straightforward: the person must have been a performing or recording artist whose talents had an effect on guitar playing—and whose career inspired and influenced other guitar players. The recipients to date are:

2010: David Honeyboy Edwards. Pioneering blues guitarist.
2011: Roger McGuinn. Founder of The Byrds and early player of the electric 12-string.
2012: B.B. King. Perhaps the most famous blues player of all time.
2013: Vic Flick. Popular session guitarist (including for The Beatles), who played the original James Bond theme.
2014: Buddy Guy. Influential electric bluesman who influenced the course of rock.
2015: Tony Iommi. Founder of Black Sabbath, and the acknowledged architect of heavy metal.
2016: Glen Campbell. Session player and singer who appeared on thousands of popular songs.
2017: Bonnie Raitt. Pioneering blues rock and slide player.
2018: Jose Feliciano. Internationally renowned guitarist across many genres.
2019: Liona Boyd. The first female classical guitarist of note.
2020: Eddie Van Halen. Game changing electric guitarist.
2021: Al DiMeola. Jazz, rock, fusion and world music innovator.


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