Voltage Guitars

Best Guitar Shops, March 2007
Faced with soaring Hollywood rents, Voltage Guitars owner Lloyd Chiate has vowed to take his vintage dealership strictly online by 2008. After 23 years, that’s an awful shame. From the ’22 Martin Brazilian Rosewood acoustic to the dual-neck Rickenbacker, Chiate’s guitars have a fine, aged feel experienced only by holding them in your hands. Chiate, a guitar sage, offers whammy tutorials that come with tales of his songwriting for Eddie Money and Motown and sketches of past customers like Jeff Beck and Stevie Ray Vaughn. Should Chiate close shop, Norman’s Rare Guitars(18969 Ventura Blvd., Tarzana, 818-344-8300) will easily ascend the throne, with an inventory so deep you can almost witness the year-by-year evolution of the Gibson Les Paul or Fender Jazzmaster.