Thursday, August 24, 2006


It's not all doom and gloom in the music industry - the manufacturers of guitars are having a good year as sales are booming.

470,000 electric and bass guitars and 520,000 acoustic guitars were sold in 2005, double the number in 1999 and about a fifth up on 2004. The new sales are coming from two areas.

One is young lads who hope that being in the next Arctic Monkeys will, if not draw the flattering attentions of the opposite sex, at least get them a cup of tea with Noel Gallagher.

The other main market is men of a certain age, who, edging perhaps into divorce and starting to forget where they left the car keys, buy a guitar to try and recapture their lost youth. It's possible Paul McCartney, for example, will be thinking of taking up the guitar soon.

Of course, sales should continue to move upwards, as The Who play more shows, which will require a supply of instruments to be trashed, and the inexplicable anti-terror laws force musicians to give their guitars up to the tender mercies of airport baggage handlers and the hold. That'd be a replacement every time, then.

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