There is something about the Guild Starfire and its arsenal of models that draws you in for a potential GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) attack. The various models of the Starfire have made their way in the hands of some true legends. Whether it be Buddy Guy and Bob Weir sporting a Starfire IV, or Jerry Garcia and his early Ginsberg-Era 60’s Starfire 3. This lineup has made its mark. Tonal range is a big part of the Starfire. When you go from predominantly rhythm player (Bob Weir) to howlin’ blues (Buddy Guy) you see how much ground it covers.
Inspired by their thinline-semi Slim Jim series, the Starfire was released by Guild in 1960. The single cutaway fell in the hands of various artists, and a twin-cutaway version was later introduced in 1963. The Guild Starfire came in several variations; seven guitars and two basses, and was consided by many players to be a great relative value competitor to the Gibson 335 family of thinline electric semi-hollow-bodies. The Starfire IV is perhaps the best known, and is held in high regard, especially amongst blues musicians. Check this amazing 1982 video shot at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester NY featuring Junior Wells, a seemingly star-struck Mick Taylor, and Buddy Guy delivering it with this Starfire on “Messin’ with the Kid.” Smokin’!