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The latest issue of Orfeo magazine is out in English, and it deals with the French School of luthiery. Focusing on Dominique Field, Jean-Noël Rohé, Olivier Fanton D’andon and Thomas Norwood, the magazine asks the question: “Is there a unified French School of luthiery?”. As always, the photography is gorgeous. You can check out the entire issue of Orfeo Magazine #7 here.
**Update** We’ve just received a few more photos of this guitar from Norwood, and the guitar should be here any day now.
In Paris last week, David Collett met with Thomas Norwood, who has just begun construction of a new guitar for us. This next one will be his 1932 Esteso model – we haven’t had one of these yet, but we’ve all been extremely impressed with the guitars we’ve had from Norwood so far, so we’re looking forward to this one. Photos 1-4 are of the wood and neck he will be using for our new guitar, and 5-8 are of a cypress Santos model that Norwood made for himself, and which David reports was an amazing instrument.
We have a new guitar coming very soon from American-born Paris luthier Thomas Norwood. Although originally from Pasadena, CA, Norwood has been living and making guitars in Paris for over 35 years. He makes three models, after the three guitars that have inspired him: a 1935 Santos, a 1932 Domingo Esteso and a 1910 Manuel Ramirez – the one on its way is the Manuel Ramirez model, and Norwood makes replicas that look and sound as close to the originals (when first built) as possible. Continue reading to see the photos.
Hungarian guitarist Andras Csaki came by GSI last week. He’s been touring the world and winning competitions since 1999 – you can read more about him here. He played Dowland’s ‘Farewell’ on a Sakurai-Kohno Professional-J spruce guitar and Barrios’ Vals Op. 8, No. 3 on a Thomas Norwood ‘1932 Esteso’ model.
Here’s part 3 of our videos of guitarist Capital – he plays Guinga’s Pra Quem Quiser Me Visitar on a new Thomas Norwood ‘1910 Manuel Ramirez’ model, and Garoto’s Meditação on a new Teodoro Perez ‘Madrid’ cedar-top. You can find out more about Capital’s comings and goings, where he’s playing and how to buy his CDs at his website.
Capital is a protegé of the legendary Brazilian composer/guitarist Guinga – Guinga even wrote a song for him called ‘Capital’. He came in last week and played a bunch of guitars, so I’ll be posting videos for the next few weeks. Here he is playing Guinga’s ‘Picotado’ on a Teodoro Perez ‘Especial Maple’ and ‘Capital’, the song written for him by Guinga, on a Thomas Norwood ‘1910 Manuel Ramirez’ model. You can find out more about Capital’s schedule and ‘Like’ him over on his facebook page. He’s also teaching at this Summer’s ‘California Brazil Camp‘, which is an amazing place to immerse yourself in Brazilian music and which has an amazing faculty.
It’s a little weird to find myself asking things like ‘which Hauser I is that?’, but one of the very cool things about working at GSI is just the sheer amount of crazy guitars I get to see and play and hear played by great players. This year saw some particularly historic guitars come through and land in the hands of players and collectors, and it was very fun to have them here for a minute and get to do videos in many cases. Some of the highlights from this year include: a 1952 Hermann Hauser I, which may well have been the last guitar Hauser ever made. Eva Beneke fell in love with the guitar when she recorded it for us and we are arranging for her to be able to record a CD on it, which we will help her produce; a 1923 Domingo Esteso (that’s in the photo here) that blew us all away; a 1967 Arcangel Fernandez that had belonged to Fred Noad; and actually quite a few beautiful Miguel Rodriguez guitars.
Click the image for more…
Looking back at all of the videos we shot in 2011 it’s impossible not to feel thankful for all the great guitarists, most of whom have become friends (if they weren’t already), who came through GSI this year and lent us their talent to help show off and archive some of the countless amazing guitars that come through the shop. They all have hectic schedules and tons to do, so I want to thank everyone for making the time. I like to think that everyone had a good time playing some new and interesting guitars, but it’s also important to remember that they all put themselves out there playing guitars they weren’t used to, and many of them were extremely accommodating of my schedule, for which I owe them a personal thank-you.
A lot of the players surprised me with music I hadn’t heard before or just particularly beautiful performances, and some of them just plain lived up to my already-high expectations of them.
In no particular order, here are the players who made this blog a really great place to hear guitar music this year and without whom many of us might never have heard some of these guitars (names will link to videos or articles about them on the blog):
Duo Solaris (Scott Wolf and Connie Sheu)
Alma Nova (Almer Imamovic and Jessica Pierce)
Line Forms Hear (Scott Morris, Steve Thachuk and Julian Coryell)
While in Paris David also met with luthier Thomas Norwood. Thomas has lived and worked in Paris for 35 years now, and considers himself a French luthier, but he’s originally from Pasadena, CA, just down the road from us. He makes three models – one based on a 1910 Manuel Ramirez, one on a 1932 Esteso, and one on a 1935 Santos. David says that his guitars are beautifully made and have a real old-world sound. We’ll be receiving our first guitar from him this year or early next year.
So David Collett went to Paris, poor thing, to pick up a new guitar from Daniel Friederich, and while there he stopped in with a few of the French luthiers we represent to see how our guitars were coming along and to say hi. Following are some photos he took with, and in the neighborhoods of, Friederich, Dominique Field, Jean Noel Rohe and Thomas Norwood. As always, click on the images to see them bigger.
Here’s Daniel Friederich, the grand-master of French luthiery, playing the new 2011 guitar that David just picked up for GSI. One of those cedar tops is for GSI’s next guitar.