The more you read, the more you know.

Having a small library of reference books is a key part to success in a problem solving environment. But, knowing which books are the right ones to have on hand can be tricky. Which books should you have?


Guitar Shop Books:

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Guitar Player Repair Guide by Dan Erlewine

“This revised and expanded edition of the Guitar Player Repair Guide is a step-by-step manual to maintaining and repairing electric and acoustic guitars and basses. Players will learn how to setup a guitar and keep it in top form by mastering basic maintenance. The advanced craftsperson will discover an invaluable reference source for complex procedures such as replacing nuts and frets. Tops include: cleaning your guitar, ‘reading’ the neck and adjusting the truss rod, adjusting an electric guitar, troubleshooting acoustic bridge problems, and visits to the Fender, Gibson and Martin factories.” (cover description)

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Gruhn’s Guide to Vintage Guitars by George Gruhn and Walter Carter

“Gruhn’s Guild to Vintage Guitars is a comprehensive reference for identifying American acoustic and electric guitars, basses, mandolins, banjos and amps. It’s an essential guild to help collectors, dealers, players and fans determine the authenticity, rarity and relative value of vintage fretted instruments. The thorough detail and clear organization make it easy to determine an instrument’s manufacturer, model and date — and most importantly, whether it is in original condition.” (cover description)

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The New Book of Standard Wiring Diagrams by Les Schatten
”Easy-to-read diagrams help you wire a guitar or bass. No confusing schematics! Originally in two volumes, Standard Wiring Diagrams has been combined into one easy-to-use book of non-schematic diagrams for the repair shop. Compiled by a guitar technician, it features 65 complete guitar and bass wiring diagrams for Fender, Gibson, Yamaha, Hamer, Peavey, Fernandes and more. Quick-reference sections also include diagrams for wiring individual guitar electronic components. 81 pages, softcover; spiral bound.” (cover description)

Fret Work Step-by-Step: The Guide To Good Fret Jobs by Eric Coleman and Dan Erlewine

“It’s been sixteen years since I wrote Fret Work Step-by-Step. At that time, many of the tools and methods we now use every day were still new, or not even invented yet. Tools like Jaws, the Fret Barber, the refret saw and many others were only prototypes that I was using in my own shop. Now they’re established StewMac tools, used in shops all around the world. The new information in this second edition will bring fretwork’s everywhere up to date. Hope this book helps you increase your fretwork skills.” (introduction by Dan Erlewine)

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Complete Guitar Repair. by Hideo Kamimoto

“If you aim to restore or construct a guitar, electric or acoustic, this book will show you how. Written in easy-to-follow language, it has —among others— valuable chapters on guitar construction, general repair information, action and scale length, the neck and fingerboard, the bridge. It deals with such important subjects as repairing cracks and missing sections, loose braces, touchup methods, finishes, spray technique, final rub and polish. Throughout the book, every important point is illustrated by diagrams, photographs and tables. You are never left in doubt about exactly what you have to do.” (cover description)

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Gibson’s Fabulous Flat-Top Guitars: An Illustrated History & Guide by Eldon Whitford, David Vinopal and Dan Erlewine

“Gibson is the most recognized name in the history of the guitar. From the 1920s to the present, Gibson and it’s flat-top guitars have become a slice of Americana. Through detailed text and more than two hundred photos, this book chronicles the development and evolution of Gibson’s fabulous flat-tops, discusses the musical properties of individual models, and shows why these guitars have been the instruments of choice to so many great musicians.”(cover description)

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Martin Guitars: A Technical Reference by Richard Johnston & Dick Boak

Martin Guitars: A Technical Reference is the authorized guide to historical facts on the production runs and manufacturing specs of virtually every Martin instrument since 1833.” (cover description)

Musical Instrument Design: Practical Information For Instrument Making by Bart Hopkins

“This encyclopedic, extensively illustrated book provides the information necessary to explore the world of musical instrument design and construction. While newcomers will appreciate it’s practical, hands-on approach and friendly tone, those with an established interest in instrument design and construction will find it equally valuable, because no other single resource contains the theoretical and practical information found in this book. Musical Instrument Design provides the information necessary to build instruments of all types; and throughout the book Bart Hopkins includes detailed construction information for many easy-to-build instruments.” (cover description)

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How To Make Your Electric Guitar Play Great by Dan Erlewine

“This book teaches you everything you need to choose, use, and improve any electric guitar — from walking into a store and purchasing with confidence, to walking on stage with your instrument playing the way you want it to. Whether you’re a beginning, intermediate, or advanced guitarist, this easy-to-use “owner’s manual” guides you step by step through setup and adjustment techniques. You’ll learn the ins and outs of evaluation a guitar, finding and using the right tool, troubleshooting your guitar’s setup, and personalizing action and intonation using the guitars of pro players for comparison.” (cover description)

Business Books:

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The Artist’s Way: A Course In Discovering And Recovering Your Creative Self by Julia Cameron

“The Artist's Way provides a twelve-week course that guides you through the process of recovering your creative self. It aims to dispel the 'I'm not talented enough' conditioning that holds many people back and helps you to unleash your own inner artist. Its step-by-step approach enables you to transform your life, overcome any artistic blocks you may suffer from, including limiting beliefs, fear, sabotage, jealousy and guilt, and replace them with self confidence and productivity. It helps demystify the creative process by making it a part of your daily life. Whatever your artistic leanings, this book will give you the tools you need to enable you to fulfill your dreams.” (cover description)

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The ‘E’ Myth by Michael E. Gerber

The E-Myth, Michael Gerber dispels the myths surrounding starting your own business and shows how commonplace assumptions can get in the way of running a business. He walks you through the steps in the life of a business from entrepreneurial infancy, through adolescent growing pains, to the mature entrepreneurial perspective, the guiding light of all businesses that succeed. He then shows how to apply the lessons of franchising to any business whether or not it is a franchise. Finally, Gerber draws the vital, often overlooked distinction between working on your business and working in your business. After you have read The E-Myth Revisited, you will truly be able to grow your business in a predictable and productive way.” (cover description)

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The Artist’s Guide: Making a Living Doing What You Love by Jackie Battenfield

“Twenty years ago, Jackie Battenfield was faced with the frightening choice many artists confront, give up on her dreams or discover how to make a living from her art. Applying her experience as a gallery director, and after years of trial and error, she achieved her goals and then some. The Artist’s Guide picks up where school leaves off, and teaches you how to successfully share your talent with the world.” (cover description)

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Product Management (for Dummies) by Brian Lawley and Pamela Schure

“Product management is now considered the fourth most important role in corporate America. Yet only a fraction of product managers have been trained for their jobs. If you are a current to aspiring product manager, this book provides a solid foundation in the concept, practices, and tools you need to take your career skills to the next level. It offers simple explanations of the product life cycle, market research, competitive analysis, market and price strategy, product road maps, brainstorming and so much more.” (cover description)

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How To Start And Run A Successful Guitar Repair Shop: Practical Tips For The New Entrepreneur by Jonny Blackwood

“Getting the inside track on a successful guitar repair, guitar building and/ or custom guitar shop business. Save yourself time, money, and frustration when starting up your own business with this helpful guide-book that offers key insider tips and a thorough overview of what to expect in the business, written by an industry veteran. Don’t go into business without reading this book!” (cover description)

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Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money by Robert T. Kiyosaki

Rich Dad Poor Dad is Robert's (the author) story of growing up with two dads — his real father and the father of his best friend, his rich dad — and the ways in which both men shaped his thoughts about money and investing. The book explodes the myth that you need to earn a high income to be rich and explains the difference between working for money and having your money work for you. This book explodes the myth that you need to earn a high income to become rich; challenges the belief that your house is an asset; shows parents why they can't rely on the school system to teach their kids about money; defines once and for all an asset and a liability.” (cover description)

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Successful Women (PEOPLE) Speak Differently by Valorie Burton

Don’t let the title fool you — this book is for EVERYONE!

“Gleaning from powerful research, bestselling author and life strategist Valorie Burton, unearths practical insights you can put to work in your life immediately. Scientific studies are proving what the ancient wisdom of scripture(s) has shown all along: The power of life and death lies in the very words you speak. Let Valorie teach you how to recognize the nuances in speech that can mean the difference between success and failure; increase you influence by changing what you think and say at critical moments; speak accurately about yourself so you don’t sabotage your most meaningful goals; boost your confidence by making simple tweaks to your everyday speech.” (cover description)

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The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

“By now, you’ve heard all the nutty get-rich-quick schemes, the fiscal diet fads that leave you with a lot of kooky ideas but not a penny in your pocket. Hey, if you’re tired of the lies and sick of the false promises, then take a look at this — it’s the simplest, most straightforward game plan for completely making over your money habits. And it’s based on results, not pie-in-the-sky fantasies. You’ll be able to design a surefire plan for paying off debt —cars, house, everything; recognize the 10 most dangerous money myths; secure a big, fat nest egg fro emergencies and retirement.” (cover description)