Monday, January 02, 2006

Rock & Roll Archaeologist by Peter Blecha

Rock & Roll Archaeologist: How I Chased Down Kurt's Stratocaster, the "Layla" Guitar, and Janis's Boa by Peter Blecha (Sasquatch Books)… Seattle's best-known collector tells all in this entertaining memoir, which chronicles his journey from childish coin and postage-stamp collector up to the mega-bucks Experience Music Project's boss curator and primary purchaser of rock 'n' roll's high-priced esoterica. Early on, Blecha fell in love with the Northwest's rock music scene, and began amassing a personal collection of every record ever recorded in the region, as well as pertinent sheet music, posters, band photos, publications, interviews, and other mementos. The collection took over his life, as collections often do, and luckily he was in the right place at the right time when billionaire Paul Allen decided to honor Jimi Hendrix's memory by devoting a museum to housing the late guitar god's artifacts. Blecha was brought on board, and as the scope of the project expanded to include other aspects of rock music's history and accomplishments, he was there every step of the way, representing Allen at high-falutin' auctions, and seeking out obscure treasures all over the globe. This book covers the highlights of Blecha's odyssey, and it'll ring the chimes of any reader who has squirreled away life's musical reminders. For once, obsession was rewarded with completion! (Dennis P. Eichhorn)

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