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Reference Library Articles

Jacob Rayman

Jacob Rayman

Jacob Rayman is revered in England with rather more honour than he is perhaps due. His contribution to violin making is fairly minor and few instruments of his survive, but as the earliest maker in England his place in history is for the moment secure.

Jacob Stainer

Jacob Stainer

Jacob Stainer remains an enigmatic maker, despite the comparatively large amount of documentary evidence about his life that has been discovered

Jean Baptiste Vuillaume

Jean Baptiste Vuillaume

Jean Baptiste Vuillaume was undoubtedly the most successful violin maker of the 19th century.

Jerry Jones History

Jerry Jones History

Nashville-based luthier Jerry Jones is dedicated to recreating the classic Danelectro, Silvertone, and Coral electric guitar designs of Nathan Daniel

Joannes Chiaravalle Faleroni

Joannes Chiaravalle Faleroni

This is a rare and fascinating instrument. The name is unrecorded previously, although Henley cites a label of 'Chiaravalle di Faleri'

John Frederick Lott II

John Frederick Lott II

John Lott, celebrated in life and fiction, is probably the best known of English violin makers.

Klein History

Klein History

Californian luthier Steve Klein's electric guitars look strikingly unconventional, but their appearance is far from being a visual gimmick

Lorenzo Storioni

Lorenzo Storioni

Lorenzo Storioni is usually credited with saving the rapidly declining violin making tradition in Cremona at the end of the eighteenth century.

Luigi Tarisio

Luigi Tarisio

Whenever great violins are talked about, the name of Luigi Tarisio will arise at some point.

Marco Dobretsovitch

Marco Dobretsovitch

Marco Dobretsovitch has the distinction of being the only professional violin maker up until the present time active in Egypt.

Martin History

Martin History

Christian Friedrich Martin (1796-1873) was born at Markneukirchen, Saxony, in the southeastern corner of modern Germany, on January 31st 1796.

Mathias Albani

Mathias Albani

Leo Fender's designs stimulated demand for the electric guitar at all levels.

Michele Deconet

Michele Deconet

We now know a great deal about Michele Deconet, through archival researches in Venice, but there remains a considerable mystery about the circumstances of one of the most apparently prolific of Venetian makers.

National - Part 1: National to 1941

National - Part 1: National to 1941

Prior to the electronic era, luthiers often sought innovative ways to boost their acoustic instruments' audibility.

National - Part 2: National Reso-phonic

National - Part 2: National Reso-phonic

National never resumed production of metal-body resonator guitars after World War II, but the Dopyera brothers revived the Dobro line in the 1950s

Pietro Giovanni Mantegazza

Pietro Giovanni Mantegazza

Pietro Giovanni Mantegazza was born in about 1730, in a parish outside the city walls of Milan.

PRS and Parker History

PRS and Parker History

Rock and jazz are radical forms of music, but the guitarists who play them often have surprisingly conservative views about instrument design.

Raffaele and Antonio Gagliano, Naples 1857

Raffaele and Antonio Gagliano, Naples 1857

The Gagliano dynasty of Naples is possibly the longest and most prolific of any of the Italian violin making families, overtaking the Amati at least in sheer numbers

Rick Turner History

Rick Turner History

Rick Turner's 'Pretzel' and Model 1 Guitars Rick Turner, one of America's most creative and respected luthiers, designs and builds his guitars in the Monterey Bay-side city of Santa Cruz.

Rickenbacker - Part 1: Electro and the 'Frying Pan'

Rickenbacker - Part 1: Electro and the 'Frying Pan'

Well before his enforced departure from the National String Instrument Corporation (see National article), musician George Beauchamp (1899-1941) had been developing a design for an electric guitar pickup.

Rickenbacker - Part 2: 1950s Onwards

Rickenbacker - Part 2: 1950s Onwards

In 1953, F.C. Hall (founder of Radio-Tel, Fender's original distributor) purchased Adolph Rickenbacker's Electro String Instrument Corporation, and re-named it after its founder

Rosendean History

Rosendean History

Having a guitar custom-made is not dissimilar to being measured for a Savile Row suit.

Sanctus Seraphin

Sanctus Seraphin

Sanctus Seraphin (or Santo Seraphino) somehow stands apart from the other makers of Venice.

Sears / Danelectro History

Sears / Danelectro History

Leo Fender's designs stimulated demand for the electric guitar at all levels.