'Play It Loud: Instruments of Rock & Roll' Exhibit to Open at the Rock Hall on Nov. 22

Earlier this year, Play It Loud: Instruments of Rock & Roll opened to much fanfare at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Now, the exhibit is coming to the Rock Hall, where it officially opens on Nov. 22.

The exhibit offers a “a rare, in-depth look at the artists and instruments that made possible many of the songs we know and love.” The largest single exhibit ever at the Rock Hall, Play It Loud will feature instruments from 1939 to today and many have never been displayed outside of their original concert performance settings.

Some of the items include Chuck Berry’s Gibson guitar, Eric Clapton’s Martin acoustic guitar model 000-42 used during his famous MTV Unplugged concert, Jerry Garcia’s “Wolf” guitar and Jimi Hendrix’s hand-decorated electric guitar. Other items include James Jamerson's upright bass used on many early Motown hits, the keyboard John Paul Jones used to record “Stairway to Heaven,” Eddie Van Halen’s performance rig from 2013, Tina Weymouth's "headless" Steinberger bass guitar that she used extensively with Talking Heads and Tom Tom Club through the late 1990s and Steve Miller's electric guitar painted with psychedelic designs.

Don Felder formerly of the Eagles, Nancy Wilson of Heart, and Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo of Metallica. all of whom have items in the exhibit, will appear at the Rock Hall at an opening party that takes place at 8 p.m. on Nov. 21. Tickets for the event are on sale now. They cost $30 for members, $50 for non-members.

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Jeff Niesel

Jeff has been covering the Cleveland music scene for more than 20 years now. And on a regular basis, he tries to talk to whatever big acts are coming through town, too. If you're in a band that he needs to hear, email him at [email protected].
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