Can there be anyone out there who calls themself a guitarist who HASN'T heard of these wonderful and legendary guitars? - played by a string of legends down through the ages, these guitars are simply the very best in their field. Even Paul Simon mentions them in his song, "Graceland" with the phrase "the Mississippi Delta was shining like a National Guitar"
Here's what their website says:
Each era of music has its share of definitive guitars. In the 70's, for example, the Les Paul electric became THE heavy metal and hard rock guitar. In the 60's, Jim Hendrix made the Fender Stratocaster the definitive rock instrument.Both of those had one advantage that the 20's bluesmen didn't have. That was electrical amplification of sound.
Back then, however, Blues guitarists had the next best thing; the National Resonator type guitar, which was three to five times as loud as any made of wood, and impervious to the often instrument-unfriendly environments of the tent shows and juke joints. This was because the guitar was made of metal, which is what makes it instantly recognizable to even the newest Blues fan.
National Reso-Phonic Guitars. Inc.:
871 Via Esteban #C,
San Luis Obispo,
Tel: (805) 546-8442
Fax: (805) 546-8430
Richard Thompson of Tomson Guitars in based in Wigan and has gained a reputation for skill, common senseand first class workmanship, his guitars are a highly crafted piece of artistry and he gives the musician EXACTLY the finely honed playing machine he or she desired. Once you play one of his guitars (or mandolins) you wonder how you ever managed without one.
Unit 2, Clayton Place,
Phone: 01942 820532
Where do you start when talking about Gibson guitars? If I were to try and put up a list of famous performers who own one of these it would probably take me a lifetime and fill several hundred pages of text.
There can be few guitar luthiers that can truly say that they have reached iconic status but Gibson is one of those names.
The one pictured alongside is the L-200 Emmylou Harris.
Here are the specifications:
• Nitrocellulose lacquer finish for beauty and tone.
• Hand-fit, tapered dovetail joint to maximize sound vibration transfer from the
neck to body.
• Radius top to maximize sound projection
• Hand-scalloped top bracing for added strength and a light top
The Gibson L-200 Emmylou Harris model features a newly designed body that is smaller and thinner than the SJ-200 but braced to produce a powerful, natural sound. Equipped with active dual source electronics with sound hole mounted volume control.
Gibson Service Phone: 1-800 4 GIBSON
Just about everyone who plays one of these fabulous guitars instantly falls in love with it - they should carry a warning label saying "caution - these instruments are addictive" Here's an extract from their website:
Moon Guitars was established by Jimmy Moon in 1979 in a small workshop on the Island of Arran, off the west coast of Scotland.
Combining his engineering skills and love of music, Jimmy first began producing dulcimers….progressing quickly on to acoustic guitars. His reputation as a fine craftsman soon flourished, and with the help of his musician brother, Brendan, he was soon making and repairing instruments for many of Scotland’s finest musicians.
By 1985 Moon Guitars had outgrown the small workshop on Arran and all was moved to the present workshops in Glasgow.
During the following years, Moon Guitars established themselves as a producer of custom built instruments of a very high quality, combined with a comprehensive repair service for both visiting and local musicians.
974 Pollokshaws Road
Glasgow G41 2HA
Tel: 0044(0)141 632 9526
Fax: 0044(0)141 632 9526
Based in Yorkshire, Bill builds beautiful, hand-crafted guitars with superb tone. Here's what the website says:
"I do not have a standard catalogue or set range of instruments as I believe in building individual guitars for individual guitarists. One of the joys of having a guitar hand built is the selection of materials, the shapes, the curves, the feel and even the tone can be balanced to fit your needs"
Phone: 01535 601821
Workshop: 0751 088 4039
These really are at the top end of the guitar makers skill and expertise. Played by a range of famous musicians, their players list reads like a "Who's Who" of the music industry.
Quality just oozes out of every pore of these instruments. Just one phrase sums up these fantastic guitars - "superb quality"
Phone 800-795-PLAY FREE * 845-486-0744 * Fax 845-486-0745
General Email: email@example.com
Truly great guitars - the craftsmanship of these instruments is second to none - here are Roger Sadowsky's own words about these remarkable guitars:
THE SADOWSKY GUITAR is the result of our years of experience working with the finest professional guitarists and bassists in New York and around the world. It is our opinion that the most important factor affecting the sound of solid body instruments is the acoustic quality of the wood. The better a guitar sounds acoustically, the better it always sounds, no matter what pickups, electronics, or amplification are used. The wood for Sadowsky instruments is carefully selected for acoustic resonance, light weight, and beautiful grain. Our guitars and basses are made from select alder, southern swamp ash, and figured maple tops laminated to swamp ash or alder.
We follow our wood selection with thin, durable finishes and construct our instruments using the highest quality components available. Most of our pickups are custom Sadowsky designs, as are our active onboard circuits. We are continuously developing new or improved components for the instruments and appreciate the contributions of our distinguished endorsers to our research and development program. The result is a professional instrument that transcends what is available in music stores.
SADOWSKY GUITARS LTD.
Professional Guitar Services
20 Jay Street #5C
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Acoustic guitars to die for - Each one of these hand-made beauties is named after The West Country rivers where they are based. Be prepared to drool over the quality and craftsmanship of their gorgeous guitars.
Tel +44 (0)1647 24139
Fax +44 (0)1647 24140
Oh these guitars will make you green with envy because you don't own one! - The quality, skill and craftsmanship that goes in to these instruments is absolutely "top of the tree" - Here are Mark Lacey's own words on his instrument building philosophy:
"My main influences have been John D’Angelico, Jimmy D’Aquisto and Gibson. I think my archtops and semi-solid models reflect this. I have tried to stay fairly traditional in my designs. I feel this is what most players want. I’ve had the opportunity to examine in detail many of the older archtops and I incorporate their best features in my own guitars. Having done a great deal of repairs over the years one learns how not to build a guitar. I’ve had to deal with just about every type of repair situation, both acoustic and electric. My main objective besides building guitars that sound good is to build guitars that will last."
By combining the finest of tonewoods, an intelligent design, and the most stringent attention to detail, inside and out, a Northwood guitar not only looks and sounds beautiful, but performs beautifully as well.
#308 - 20445 62nd Ave.
Langley, BC, Canada V3A 5E6
When playing a Breedlove, you will feel the active response of the body and effortless chording up and down the Slender, Handrubbed Neck; hear the Unique Sound, the vocal range, balance, intonation, harmonics and projection. It is part piano, part violin, part harp... part human. Once you feel the Energy from the instrument, you will know you have found your Soulmate.
Breedlove Guitar Co.
19885 8th Street
Tumalo, Oregon 97701
Phone (541) 385-8339
Roger Bacorn is not only a nice chap, he also makes some of the worlds finest Guitars and mandolins, but don't just take my word for it, here's some feedback from one of his customers
"I re-strung and tried out the ES335 for the first time at a band rehersal at the weekend. I have to say firstly that the reaction alone from the other band members was extraordinary and that was before I had even plugged it in !!!!!!!!!
The clean sounds have a bell like chime and quality to them that is simply stunning and it filled the rehersal room in an almost surround sound like way. I should say that I use a stereo amplifier system. The sustain is never ending and the tone is sweet. I have found that the clean sounds cut through brilliantly either for lead or rhythm" - need we say more??
Bacorn Custom Guitars
2230 River Rd.
Nichols, NY 13812
Gosden Guitars specialise in acoustic and electric lap steel musical instruments. All instruments are truly hand crafted by one man from start to finish. This traditional approach together with a genuine passion for instrument making result in a beautiful and personal instrument.
2 Chiltlee Close,
Phone 07812 183489
This is one amazing guy making some of the finest and most unusual hand-made quality instruments anywhere in the world. He has made some fantastic multi-neck instruments, and even a 14 string guitar ! - thats right 14 STRINGS (see below) - words just can't sum up the talents of this guy, you just have to have a look on his website at some of his instruments.
To use his own words "Creator of world-class acoustic guitars, basses, mandolins and multi-neck instruments. You dream it - I'll build it" - and boy is that true!
RUA DOS CARVALHINHOS No 4
Tel: 44 351 231929144
PLEASE CONTACT THROUGH GUEST BOOK
No website on the subject of musical instruments would be complete without mentioning Fylde Guitars. Played by some of the finest musicians the world over, these instruments are second to none for quality, craftsmanship, tone and sheer playing pleasure. I have personally played some of their instruments and I absolutely adore them. To use the words from their own website:
"Thirty years of professional guitar making experience, plus unrivalled technical expertise and facilities, the finest of human skills, and a desire to make only the finest possible unique musical instruments. - That’s Fylde Guitars" - and I agree with that totally !
Gilwilly Industrial Estate
Phone: 44(0) 1768 891515
Fax; 44(0) 1768 868998
An icon in the musical instrument field, Randy Wood built his first instrument, an Autoharp, in the early 1960's. After moving to Milledgeville, GA. in the mid sixties to work with Tut Taylor, he built his first Mandolin. The late, "Legendary" Bob Givens also came to work with Tut, and built his first mandolin. "We were both flying blind", Randy says of those early days.
Randy moved on from Milledgeville to Muscle Shoals, Ala. and Rual's Music Service, and then became a founding member of G.T.R. in Nashville, Tennessee, which later became Gruhn's Guitars. Over the years, Randy has performed his craft for everyone from Elvis Presley, Eric Clapton, and Keith Richards, to Vasser Clements, Clarence White, Bill Monroe and Emmy Lou Harris.
Randy Wood Guitars Voice: (912) 748-1930
1304 E. Highway 80
Voice: (912) 748-1930
FAX: (912) 748-0141
Martin Seeliger makes superb hand-built guitars that are a joy to play. Here is a few words from his website:
"I founded Lakewood Guitars back in 1985 with one purpose in mind--- to build very special musical instruments that would become treasured by their owners. My love for the guitar dates back to when I was a boy scout. Playing the guitar together was the one thing I remember most about being with my friends. When I was 18, a man named Manfred Pletz offered me an apprenticeship building guitars in his shop. Most of the instruments we made at that time were classical guitars, so it's no wonder that my first love was this type of instrument. We also built steel string guitars, all kinds of mandolin-type instruments and acoustic basses. It was a great challenge, and as a result I learned many things about this family of stringed instruments. My apprenticeship lasted three years. I will be forever grateful to Manfred for the lessons he gave me".
Zum Bahnhof 6a
D - 35394 Giessen
Tel.: +49 - 641 - 43038
Fax: +49 - 641 - 491398
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Here's a range of famous guitars going back to the early days of British Pop music. These were played by the legendary Hank Marvin. Here's what the website says:
"Burns London is proud to announce that it is soon to offer a limited edition reissue of the original 1964 Marvin Guitar as part of its new Custom Elite Series.
To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the guitar, authenticated by Hank Marvin as a true replica of his original 1964 Signature Model, will be available as a limited edition only. Its re-release will be in late August. The Shadows 37-date sell-out UK tour will commence in May, during which Hank will use the Burns Marvin live on stage".
telephone + 44 ( 0 ) 208 7833 638
fax + 44 ( 0 ) 208 7833 651
Stefan Sobell makes a wide range of wonderful instruments for the professional musician. With a rare dedication to making instruments with a superb tonal value,Stefan really has a range of instruments to suit all players. Instruments to make you green with envy. Here's what he says on the website:
"My workshop is the Old School in the rural Northumbrian village of Whitley Chapel. It's made up of two handwork shops and a machine area, with space to stack and season the different woods. It's cosy and compact without being cramped, and has large windows with pleasant views over green fields.
The best of today’s luthiers combine the skill of traditional craftsmen with power tools and well-thought out jigs to produce consistently outstanding instruments. Factories using computer controlled machinery can build much faster, but without the ability to match each process and each piece of wood to the preceding one that is so important to the construction of a great instrument."
Stefan Sobell Musical Instruments
The Old School
Northumberland NE47 0HB
Phone:(+44) 1434 673 567