Martin Miranda (rt) and Bob Mattocks (lt) at de Erro Guitars
My guitar path began around the age of 16 when I heard about VALLEY ARTS from a friend of mine that took guitar lessons there. I was looking for a quality 12 string and not only found this guitar but found a major influence on the rest of my life. The first VA show room was so small that 5 people filled it up but the friendly atmosphere and great feelings were already there. I found myself going there and "hanging out" after school and when the time came to make the famous move to Ventura Blvd, I was there. After I graduated from High School I asked if I could work there for awhile till I decided what I was going to do, not knowing that WAS what I would do for the next 17 years. This time of my life was filled with some of the greatest highs and lowest lows of ones life but I have never had regrets.
When Samick took control of VA (the summer of 1992), I soon left and started my own company, WORLD ARTS. For the next 10 years I represented many great companies around the world. Giving me more insight into what guitar players wanted and needed.
Now many years later, I live in beautiful Upstate New York and do guitar repair and guitar crafting in a historic location. But never have the great memories of VA left. I still receive many emails with questions about VA and thanks for being a part of many great instruments, desires and wishes of so many people around the world.
Bob and I are bringing to you these pages of resources and interaction for you to know as much about your original VALLEY ARTS GUITAR as possible. Over my 30 plus years in the guitar industry, I have seen many companies come and go and correct information always seems to be lost. With this website, we will all keep this from happening.
I also wish to thank all of you for many great years of memories and friendships ...
Guitarist for over thirty years, my love for Valley Arts Guitars started at an early age. Growing up in Southern California I visited the shop quite often and coveted VA's. With no money, owning a VA at that time was out of the question but I made a decision to someday (when I had a real career) own as many VA's as possible. My wife and family bought me my first VA (VA M Series) and the obsession started.
Through surfing the internet for another VA, I noticed many VA's being billed as authentic ones (pre-1992) that were indeed Samick guitars ... also noticing there was absolutely no information on these guitars on the web. I decided to start this site as a resource for searchers of an elusive VA and 'web eye candy' for visitors that appreciate the guitars with the first VA registry. Also, I coined the term 'pre-Gibson, pre-Samick' to help clarify the era of the original shop in California ... not to delineate the difference between 'good' and 'bad' guitars. I now have one of the largest collection of VA's known, including the Interlock Prototype (verified by both Mike and Martin) and have become one of the authorities on Valley Arts Guitars. Living only a few short miles from Martin Miranda, we quickly became friends and Martin has graciously offered to help with this project.
My motto: You can NEVER own too many VA's! ;-)
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