For those of you who haven't heard of Arne Johansson, you are in for a treat! This man is a living and walking Hagstrom memorabilia man, his very own Hagstrom museum curator, a fanatic, and maybe most of all to those who visited Östersund in September 2005, the force behind the Worlds Greatest Hagstrom Guitar Show that provided such fun and hospitality in the Autumn of 2005.
But - as you can see here - the guitar show could have been held right inside Arne's Östersund home! So I truly count myself privileged to have met this generous man, enjoyed his boundless hospitality, and marvelled at his inexhaustible passion for Music - Especially when it is connected to the Hagstrom Brand.
I just will not allow you to believe I overstate the case when it comes to Arne, to call him a devotee is not enough! How many of us would allow the Hagstrom name get under your skin quite as much as he has!
Such enthusiasm must call for a madman eh? None of it! Arne is fun, but also very capable; otherwise the Rockensvanner organisation (www.rockensvanner.com) would not exist, the collection surely would not be so well documented and presented, and this 'second home' - on the grounds of his beautiful home by the lake (of course) would not be so well organised.
No Arne is pretty much unique in the world of Hagstrom and has quietly over the years amassed one of the most incredibly diverse collections you could have the pleasure of encountering! His family still talk to him too - so there's a relief, and a lot to learn for the budding collector when it comes to how you get the rest of the family "on board".
His wife Gunborg is equally hospitable providing a lovely meal, and we entertained ourselves with chat and fun - that is Bill Marriott, John Haskin, Manfred Graeder, Ulf Zandhers, Bengt Eriksson and other friends. The youngsters - John's granddaughter Morgan and my son Chris also enjoyed themselves, although Chris was a bit unsure when he was offered a piece of Rudolph the reindeer to taste.... after all, Christmas wasn't too far off...
Anyway, let us now explore the museum / the shrine / the education that is Arne's Hagstrom world...
The collection is merged into a much wider appreciation of all things music from the 50's through the 60's and beyond.
You will find masses of vinyl adorning the walls and ceilings, many items of special memorabilia from Abba to Beatles to Zappa - and I'm sure if I spent the time looking through I could find something for every letter of the alphabet!
So it isn't just the guitars we see in a few choice collections, it is other Hagstrom items, other special items from a wide span of what was the emerging world of music mania.
You might be forgiven if you thought this was the full extent of the display.
However this is one of the annexes in this living museum, so unless I can help to add to the story told in the pictures, I shall stop right now, and just let you feast your eyes on more!
Click on any of the smaller pictures to reveal bigger versions of so many wonderful sights to behold...
You may notice that the scene shown above right, is the basis of a now well known Hagstrom postcard you might have received. Well this is in fact the site of what was the Sauna in this building. Now, as you know - in Sweden - this is quite a sacrifice to make!
Bear in mind too that he is now the custodian of those New Old Stock guitars from Canada shown under the heading Michael Seaman in the visitors pages. These too were on display along with the rest of his collection at the guitar show.
I should mention one of the reasons for this lifelong fascination. Arne's love of guitars and music came from his father. There are many boys and girls who grew up following the interests of their parents in one way or another, in this case you must agree he's carried on the interest in a way that would make any parent proud!
So what was one of the significant moments in this initiation?
Hagstra La Vista with Arne
- This Dapper Zappa SuperSwede made a record price on Tradera auctions in May
Early in 2008 Arne decided to sell his collection and to make sure it
remained with lovers of the original story
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