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Moseley completes new book

By Michael Butler

Writing is a favorite pastime for Willie G. Moseley.

"I don't have any hobbies. I don't hunt. I don't fish. I don't play golf," he said. "That sounds unpatriotic around here."

Moseley, 71, has just finished his 14th book, "Bakersfield Guitars - The Illustrated History."

"What I try to do with bookwriting these days is write about something that nobody else has written about. That's what appeals to me."

In the 1960s, groups like the Ventures, helped make popular a Bakersfield, Calif. guitar called Mosrite.

"I was a teenager in the '60's," Moseley said. "For a lot of us, that was the first band/brand that we could remember - the Ventures and Mosrite. The big two guitar brands back then and still today are Fender and Gibson."

Glen Campbell also used a Mosrite.

"He played more than one Mosrite in the studio," said Moseley. "There's a picture in the book of him with a 12-string Mosrite. The "Gentle on My Mind" album cover shows that."

Moseley once owned a Mosrite Joe Maphis bass model. A guitar collector himself, Moseley is selling off some of his repertoire.

"My collection topped out at 97. I've only got about 15 left. If something happens to me, I don't want my wife and daughter to have to lug around a bunch of black rectangular cases. It's time to clear them out."

Moseley spent a week in the Bakersfield area in the San Joaquin Valley doing research for the book.

"It's an agricultural area. It's awful dusty out there. You see things like cows wandering around orange groves."

In addition to Mosrite models, another dozen guitar bands are featured in the book. Moseley is the senior writer for "Vintage Guitar" magazine, which helped in utilizing material.

"I culled some of my own articles from the magazine. It fit pretty well."

"Bakersfield Guitars - The Illustrated History" is available at Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million and Amazon among other locations.

"I got an e-mail from the Ernest Tubb Record Shop in Nashville. They're going to stock the book. That's exciting."

Moseley's 15th book is already in the works.

"I can't get into that much detail right now, but it's another kind of guitar-oriented book with more of a connection to the state of Alabama."