Finding Innovation and Success through Convergence

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On a recent, bright and sunny, Sunday afternoon I found myself in a suburban Westchester music store that was hosting, “The Westchester Guitar Show,” an inaugural vintage guitar buy, trade and swap meet.

One of the exhibitor tables clearly stood out from the crowd and caught my eye. Julie Rosenberg hand paints and builds custom guitars. I felt an immediate connection and struck up a conversation. Like me, Julie is both musician and artist for many years. And she has found a calling in the convergence of these two skills, turning it into an innovative business idea.

Coincidentally, only four days later, I attended the The 99% Conference here. One of the speakers was Frans Johansson, author of The Medici Effect who believes successful innovation most often happens at the convergence of diverse disciplines.

It’s interesting to have found a real-life example of this principal. So, you are in a good place, Julie! Good luck to you!

Vintage guitar shows, meets and stores used to be plentiful 20 years ago in and around New York City, which was when I began collecting. As a former player and performer, collecting vintage instruments is one way to keep the connection alive. (I would sometimes run into Steve Howe, an avid collector, at such gatherings.) The available inventory of instruments is dwindling and prices continue to climb, which has resulted in fewer shows and public venues for sought after instruments.

Vintage guitar collecting is now a certified investment activity where returns can be healthy, far outperforming equity markets and other commodities. Musician, artist or investor, if you’d like to look into vintage guitar collecting, you might start here: Vintage Guitar Magazine with a subscription.

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