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Blog // Sounds
July 17, 2005

Postmodern Guitars

Whilst browsing Stewart-MacDonald I saw an intriguing DVD called Gourmet Guitars. This is the first in a DVD series of documentaries on contemporary guitar makers (luthiers). The first features three makers, Fine Resophonic, Pagelli (who have some stunning jazz guitars) and Tueffel. Ulrich Teuffel’s short essay The electric guitar has lost its myth is a […]

Whilst browsing Stewart-MacDonald I saw an intriguing DVD called Gourmet Guitars. This is the first in a DVD series of documentaries on contemporary guitar makers (luthiers). The first features three makers, Fine Resophonic, Pagelli (who have some stunning jazz guitars) and Tueffel.

Ulrich Teuffel’s short essay The electric guitar has lost its myth is a thought-provoking read.

“Every good luthier knows with which construction and material a certain sound is obtained. The artistry lies in giving the instrument a very distinct appearance or effect along with the sound. I see my instruments as absolute. This means that every instrument has a certain symbolic meaning and function in the Pop-complex. One can compare this to the clothing that we wear. We select clothing according to function, e.g. job, sport, winter clothing, etc., as well as according to an expression of fashion with which we then distinguish ourselves. So will one, as a musician, decide which statement he wants to achieve with his choice of instrument.”

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Responses
Toni 17 years ago

I guess the Teuffel comment is correct, especially with modelling amps and processors etc available. Now that I have a range of guitars, the instrument can be selected according one’s mood and then the sound tweeked externally to make it match the song. There are exceptions: a standard Les Paul can’t be made to produce a thin, wiry tone without modification, and a conventional single coil strat doesn’t do huge, fat, sustaining overdrive work too well *generally*. It does mean that you can choose a guitar according to how you want it to play, rather than just for how it sounds.

People are sometimes amazed that I’d choose a pointy flying V for worship use.

Pearl 17 years ago

Do you know the guitar music of Travis Steele Nevils or Michael Young? I’m beginning the love the guitar more all the time.

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