2022 Youri Soroka "Templars Oak" SP/OA
|Back & Sides
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As with many of Youri's instruments, the materials used on this instrument have a very interesting back story. In the summer of 2020, Youri met with a group of visitors in his workshop in France. One of them was Monsieur Guerrier - a retired doctor from Lyon, France. Monsieur Guerrier asked Youri if he’d be interested in building a guitar with 900-year-old oak wood salvaged from the house of a Templar knight. This seemed to be unbelievable at first, but after listening further to his story, Youri found out that this wood had been stored for decades in a shack next to this man's house. And indeed it was confirmed that it was sourced from a Templar knight’s house located in the region of Bugey. In the early 13th century, there was a large presence of Knights Templar in this area (e.g., in the communes of Ambérieu-en-Bugey, Saint-Rambert-en-Bugey) who left behind plenty of houses, temples, and commanderies (Read more).
In the 1960s, Monsieur Guerrier’s father-in-law lived in the small village of Resinan, France, located next to Saint-Rambert-en-Bugey. One day, while coming back home, he witnessed a group of workers demolishing a historical house of the Knights Templar – Demeure des Templiers. Carpentry beams were lying around. He acquired them and cut them into planks in a sawmill. After that, he stored them at his house for many years, and after his passing, they were stored in the house of Monsieur Guerrier.
Youri instantly fell in love with the idea of using this wood to make a guitar. He visited Monsieur Guerrier and retrieved the wood in February 2021. Monsieur Guerrier’s only condition was to be able to see the final guitar completed from these precious materials. Youri told us that for him it was an unforgettable experience to work with wood from such a unique source. We are very pleased to report that the guitar sounds as beautiful as it looks - Youri was able to achieve his usual high standard of tonal characteristics - including a large palette of tonal colors, excellent balance and clear separation between voices while retaining a nice plump, juicy quality of sound. It also has a low body resonance which he favors as well as a lightweight build which gives the guitar a very quick attack, making it a breeze to play. Overall a really stunning instrument in every way... with a great story as well!
Although previously owned, this guitar is in excellent condition with only some very minor wear in the finish.