A real life guitar hero

March 28, 2011 2:56:21 PM PDT
When you hear the expression "guitar hero" you may think of the popular interactive music video game, but this story sheds light on a whole different kind of guitar hero.

That hero isn't a musician, but the man behind the musical instrument - the craftsman or artist who labors to get the wood and strings to perfection.

John Monteleone, a modern day luthier, practices a very old profession that is now survived by only a very few.

Monteleone hears and feels music. The wood is spruce from the Alps and contoured with exquisite care.

"This is the heart and soul of it right here," said Monteleone of his guitar. "Just when you touch it starts to sing, that's what you want."

Each guitar takes about 6 weeks to perfect.

They sell for $40,000 and up, which is pretty incredible considering Monteleone never thought he could make a career out an old Italian tradition.

Monteleone has been incredibly innovative his whole career. He's considered one of the best.

Monteleone's instruments along with others are on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through July 4th.

On April 10th, the museum will host a live concert in which 4 of his guitars, known as the Four Seasons, will be played ensemble.

Moneteleone labors at his Long Island studio, crafting pieces that provide the total experience.

"Every musician is searching for that component of inspiration and I try to build that into every instrument I make," said Moneteleone.

For more information on the exhibit please visit: