been building guitars for 35 years, and here are some of the milestones
The Canadian Years
The California Years
In 1967 I made two solidbody guitars
working on the
dining table in my rented apartment in Vancouver, BC.
Having been "discovered" in the
I was invited to join the "Mediteranean Guitar Shop", a Co-operative
technically owned by George Bowden, who also had a guitar factory on
island of Mallorca, in Spain. Disolved in 1969. Michael Dunn was the
Builder on hand.
My first commissioned instrument was by
and for Joe
Mock. He was big in the local scene, probably best known in his band
Duck", and then in the trio "Pied Pumkin". Pied Pumpkin is still played
with it's original members (Rick Scott and Shari Ulrich, who still has
one of my earliest FT-16's)
Worked briefly for Bill Lewis, the
founder of "Luthier's
Mercantile". Didn't work out so well
Shared a shop with Tim Hobrough (harps
Alan Finch (small pipes), Richard Harkins (coronettos), Ray Nurse
and the like), and Ted Turner (harpsichords). This lasted for a couple
of years, and was great for me.
During the previous period, Tim and I
went to Toronto,
Ontario, where we set up our workshop at the Ontario Science Center's
event called "In Praise of Hands". We did two weeks of this with a week
in the middle wherein we showed at the Mariposa Folk Festival. This was
in early August, and it was too hot for my taste.
I also participated in several
hippie-style art and
craft festivals in this period, mostly promoted by a group called
based at the Dollarton Mud Flats near Vancouver. The best two were the
"Dewdney Trunk Pleasure Faire", and the follow-up "Christmas Pleasure
What a party!
I spent ten years working in and about
and built well over 100 instruments there.
My first California workshop was in
Fairfax, a little
town in northern Marin County.
I showed at one Sausalito Art Festval,
and at one
Mill Valley Art Festival. While these are very prestigeous events, at
locally, they are not great high end guitar sales venues, at laest for
Then I spent twenty years in Sausalito
in four different
workshops. The final fifteen years were in a 2400 square foot facility
at 265 Gate Five Road, where I made the video I used as a catalog for
I put this website up in 1994.
In 1995 I met Eric
Introduced by local Banjo maker David Spurgeon, I helped Eric put his
together, and then did his repair work for several years before taking
over the building of his guitars when Julius Borges gave it up. Eric
I are going strong.
I have shown in all but one of the Healdsburg
I have been a member of the Northern
of Luthiers (NCAL) since it's
I have operated an instrument repair
service at the
Strawberry Music Festival (with my peer, Michael Lewis) since 1996 (and
will be there this year).
I have shown my work in the Luthier's
the annual CBA Father's Day Bluegrass Festival in Grass Valley,
four years running (and will be there this coming time)
In 1998 I built the shop I'm in now. It
is on the
back of the property I live on, and I have no plans to move.
2003 marks the inception of Luthier's