John’s research not only resulted in the book but a companion CD, his wife’s idea: ‘I really became obsessed with the project, first with the notion of finding at least one woman in that 1944 photograph and then with telling well the stories of dozen I’d located. At one point, my wife said, “You know, you’re going to have to make a recording. People won’t really understand the story unless they hear the guitars.”
‘So, I put out the word to guitar collectors across the North American continent and witnessed approximately 30 World War Two-era, ‘Banner’
Gibson guitars land at my doorstep. Haircuts curly hair medium length I recruited a wonderful singer and player of Americana music, Lauren Sheehan, and a gifted recording engineer and co-producer, Eric Tate, and spent about ten days in Firehouse Twelve, a state-of-the-art recording studio in New Haven, Connecticut.
“We spent the first day or so simply perfecting our recording set-up. We recorded all guitars through exquisite microphones: A stereo matched set of DPA 4052s and a Royer SF24. After we’d positioned Lauren and the microphones, we marked all positions with masking tape on the floor and photographed the setup. We then made sure to use precisely the same setup to record each guitar.’
“I FOUND THAT UNIQUE 1944 PHOTO OF THE ALLFEMALE WORKFORCE. I BEGAN TO WONDER. DID THESE WOMEN BUILD GUITARS?
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