|Before Ernie Ball's "The Joe Bonamassa Experience" kicked off at Guitar Center Hollywood's Vintage Room on January 29, 2016, I was able to talk to Bonamassa about his own guitar collection, as well as his thoughts on the care and feeding (and playing) of vintage instruments. It was also great to pull Ernie Ball's Sterling Ball into the conversation—once he was done playing his way through Bonamassa's incredible guitars that were assembled for the event. (For Instagram video, click here and here.)
The Joe Bonamassa Experience was launched by Ernie Ball last summer, and it served up more than
$70,000 in prizes—including “instant win” goodies identified by picks
hidden in Ernie Ball strings purchased at a Guitar Center—before it
closed on September 30, 2015.
Each of five grand prize winners was awarded an Ernie Ball Music Man
guitar, Ernie Ball strings and accessories, a Dunlop B95 Joe Bonamassa
Cry Baby, a Dunlop Joe Bonamassa Wah, and, more importantly, a day hanging with Bonamassa and his guitars at Guitar Center Hollywood to actually play some extremely valuable guitars — including a 1951 Fender Nocaster, 1955 Fender Stratocaster, 1959 Gibson Les Paul,
1958 Gibson Flying V, and other collector’s dream machines.
The lucky grand prize winners were:
Daniel Moore, Ogden, Utah
Jason Wirch, Alberta Canada
Damien Sancho, Castres, France
Ricky Shepherd, Sheffield, England
Joachim Schuette, Hannover, Germany (*Schuette was unable to attend the event due to illness, but he is invited to a show during Bonamassa’s tour of Germany.)
Bonamassa describing the highlights of his collection to Moore, Wirch, Sancho, and Shepherd.