August 28, 2006 12:00 PM

Not just for pimply stoners anymore, air guitar now has an annual World Championship. Dan Crane (stage name: Björn Türoque), New York regional champ in ’05, takes us backstage in a new memoir.

HOW DO PROS DIFFER FROM AMATEURS? You have to train like you’re in the NBA. You turn up the music, disturb the neighbors and imagine you’re 14, in your bedroom.

WHAT DO JUDGES LOOK FOR? The criteria are technical prowess, stage presence and “airness,” meaning people forget you’re not holding a guitar.

IS AIR GUITAR FOR GUYS ONLY? More and more women are getting involved. I’m happy—nothing is sexier than seeing a female go onstage and let loose.

ANY FAMOUS ROCKERS WHO BEGAN AS AIR GUITARISTS? Jimi Hendrix; he couldn’t afford a guitar so he practiced on a broom.

ANY FAVORITE AIR TUNES? “Making Love Out of Nothing at All,” by Air Supply, because that’s what air guitar is—making something out of nothing.

THE WORST SONGS? I’ve heard “Dueling Banjos.” Not good.

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