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Handmade & Vintage Instruments: Acoustic Guitars, Classical Guitars & Electric Guitars

New Builder Profile: Loïc Bortot of Bouchereau Guitars

Paul attended three shows last year, Fretboard Journal Summit, the Santa Barbara Acoustic Instrument Celebration, and the Woodstock Invitational Luthier’s Showcase. There he met a number of new builders with some truly awe-inspiring builds. Naturally, we took several of them on as new builders for Dream Guitars! Alongside Michel Pellerin, Sam Guidry, and Isaac Jang, we’re also proud to have added French builder Loïc Bortot (of Bouchereau Guitars) to our ranks! We’ve already sold the Mistral OM Loïc sent us, but do check out the listing to read more about this awesome guitar and get a listen to Al’s demo. You can find it on our site here: http://www.dreamguitars.com/detail/5391-bouchereau_mistral_009/. The next Mistral is already in the works, though, so read to the end for a few sneak peak photos of the next one. In addition, we’d like to share his responses from a brief interview we conducted with Loïc earlier this year. Enjoy!

What or who inspired you to begin building guitars?

Before coming to Canada to become a luthier, I experienced several fields of study and unpleasant jobs in France. I spent two years in college studying Geography, but I was fed up with theoretical knowledge and I needed to experiment in a handwork field. Besides that I did a couple jobs in huge factories with low revenues and boring days. Seeing people who have been working there for years so unhappy made me realize that I had to find a good job before it was too late. I played a lot of guitar by that time, and even though I had never worked with wood before, I decided to give building a try. My first glimpse of the beauty of handmade guitars came from the work of Frank Cheval. Then I went to Quebec City and began the course at the Lutherie School in 2011.

2016 Bouchereau Mistral #009 in Ziricote & Lutz Spruce

What builders inspire you today?

Today, I am inspired by a lot of luthiers, mostly from North America: Ervin Somogyi indeed, and all his students. Michael Bashkin, Mario Beauregard, Michel Pellerin, Tom Doerr. Also, I am a great fan of Japanese craftsmanship, and their luthiers honor us with their great talent: Nishi Keisuke, Ryosuke Kobayashi, Ryohei Echizen, Hiroshi Ogino, Keisuke Fuji, and others. I am developing my own approach of design and building, but all these talented fellow builders are a part of my own development as a luthier.

Please describe your goals in voicing an instrument. How did you first find your voice, and how do you continue to experiment?

As I am still at the beginning of my career, my voicing methods are constantly evolving. My guitars are mostly designed for fingerpicking, and I am now focusing on controlling my back, top, and body pitch so they work together as a whole. When calibrating the parts, I focus a lot on their stiffness to weight ratio, I try to get my tops as light as possible so they have a quick and focused response. My comprehension of the frequency and vibrating behavior of the instrument remains a complex point for me. I am developing a new testing method based on some precious advice I got from Leo Buendia at the 2016 WILS. I truly believe, like most builders, that voicing and making instruments is an endless learning process.

Ziricote Back & Sides, Ebony Bindings & Heel Cap

Where do you think your building style will take you in the next five years?

My goal for now is to get my name out there. My participation to the 2016 WILS and my new partnership with you guys at Dream Guitars have really helped me to put my name on the map! For the next five years, I want to attend more guitar showcases like Woodstock, fill up my order list, and continue to develop my model lineup. I also have some unique guitar projects that I am dreaming to complete when the timing and finances allow it. I want my job as a luthier to be secure, and for that the Canadian Immigration department has a critical role to play as well.

Any interesting facts about your building process or shop arrangement?

My shop is small but functional for my work. I build most of the tools and jigs I am using myself, such as the binding channel routing arm, bending machine, molds, etc. I would rather spare hundreds of dollars in making my own stuff, and I also find it more satisfying in the end. My job as a technician at the Quebec Lutherie School is an amazing opportunity for me to have access to heavy machinery.

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Bortot’s One-Man Shop in Quebec, Canada

What was your favorite, or your first, instrument that you ever played?

My very first guitar was my father’s old Japanese Takeharu Dreadnought, but it was not my favorite. As I am mostly an electric guitar player (which can sound odd as I have never built any) my favorite guitar in terms of playing would be my Gibson Les Paul. I also love playing on Bouchereau Guitars, indeed!

What do you enjoy doing outside of building instruments?

My life is mostly lutherie-focused, and even though it can be kind of isolating, my mind remains pretty healthy. Of course I have other activities in life, like paragliding in the summer and skiing in the winter, or just hiking from time to time. I love hanging out with my friends too. I try to go back to France once a year for a couple of weeks. It is always a blast to spend time with my friends and family there, and to put aside my rushed Canadian life for a while.

If you had not become a guitar maker, where do you think life would have led you?

If I was not a guitar maker now, I would probably be working in France in a wine industry job with my brain turned off and my TV turned on.

What music are you listening to right now?

Led Zeppelin, The doors, Snarky Puppy, Vulfpeck, System of a down, Chinese man, Justice, Paul Kalkbrenner, Chopin; among many others. I almost always work with music in the background in my workshop.

We’ve sold the first Mistral you sent us, but you’re already working on the next one. Can you share a few details about the upcoming Mistral for Dream?

I have some pics of the guitar in progress for you, but it is at a pretty early stage right now. I am currently gluing the bracing on the top and back, and I have not started assembling the rim yet. The features of the upcoming Mistral are high-grade Sitka Spruce top, Quilted Sapele back and sides, Florentine cutaway, Ebony bindings, and Honduran Mahogany neck. 25.4″ scale length, Ebony fingerboard and bridge, Schertler tuners (or Gotoh 510 maybe), and a raised fingerboard.

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Quilted Sapele

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Sitka Spruce Top

Sneak Peek: Guitars Not Yet on the Website (updated 5/25/16)

Bookmark this page for frequent updates. (Please scroll down for additional guitars.)

Schoenberg Soloist OMC

East Indian Rosewood and Sitka Spruce

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Take the Avian Guitar Adventure

songbird-rosewood2-cut-spaceA few years ago, we began the search for great sounding but reasonably priced guitars to offer our many clients who were asking for such an animal.

As luck would have it at that same point in time, our luthiers Michael Baskin and Harry Fleishman were in the midst of designing guitars that would be built overseas as a new company called Avian. Today, these guitars are hand-made in a small factory only building Avian guitars. This is not a situation where a huge factory is pumping out 20 different brands. That is why the quality is so great and the tone so wonderful.

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Click Above to Learn More about Avian Guitars from Paul

songbird-maple4-spaceMichael and Harry have personally trained this small, talented staff and the results are evident. We have sold many of these guitars to people here in the shop where quite frankly they sell themselves with just a few moments of play. But for those of you out in the Internet land, we want to offer you a risk-free way to try one for yourself.

Hence, we are proud to announce the Avian adventure!

For a limited time, try an Avian guitar for three days in your home. avian-skylark-rosewood1-spaceWe are so confident that you will agree with us that these guitars rival others that cost more than $5000, we’re willing to put our money where our mouth is. Call us today and we will ship you an Avian guitar at no charge. All we ask is that if you return it, you pay just the return shipping which is only $75. We will pick up the rest.

But that’s not all – We will also include a Dream Guitars Volume One CD and Tablature so you’ll have plenty of music to play on your new Avian guitar.

Select from any of our in-stock Avian guitar models including:

Ready for the Avian adventure? Call us today to take advantage of the above promotion.

Offer valid through 10/15/14 or while current inventory lasts

Dream Guitars is proud to announce the acquisition of Acoustic Pro Musician

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Dream Guitars is proud to announce the acquisition of Acoustic Pro Musician

With the acquisition of Acoustic Pro Musician (www.acousticpromusician.com), Dream Guitars (www.dreamguitars.com) now has a dedicated web destination for quality instruments affordable to all players and staff tested gear.

Whether you need a stage instrument, are looking for a travel guitar or flight case, or you are new to the custom guitar world, Acoustic Pro Musician is your resource.

For the past 14 years, Acoustic Pro Musician (www.acousticpromusician.com) and its founder, Danny Brevard built a strong apm-logoreputation within the guitar community. Upon Danny’s decision to retire from the acoustic guitar business, he reached out to Paul Heumiller and a deal was struck for Dream Guitars to acquire Acoustic Pro Musician and continue building the Acoustic Pro Musician brand and reputation of offering quality instruments and gear in affordable price ranges for all musicians.

“As you know, music is my passion and serving others has always been a priority in my life.  As I have reached the age of 60, I’ve realized that there are things that I still want to do but I have to make some life changes to do them.  Dream Guitars is perhaps the finest shop in the world and known for tremendous expertise and helping players in an honorable fashion. Paul shares my vision and passion and I am confident you will all be delighted to work with Paul if you haven’t already.” – Danny Brevard

The team of 8 professionals at Dream Guitars, and now Acoustic Pro Musician, look forward to continuing to build two strong brands into the future, offering customers the full spectrum of quality acoustic instruments and gear available throughout the world.

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“I am extremely delighted that Danny has asked me to carry on his wonderful shop Acoustic Pro Musician. I have heard nothing but great things over the years and I have the utmost respect for Danny’s expertise and service. I will continue to operate Acoustic Pro Musician as it’s own entity, offering the same guitar lines and the great service everyone expects from Acoustic Pro and from Dream Guitars.” – Paul Heumiller

Mountain Song Guitars by Ken Jones Available at Dream Guitars

The beginning of 2014 brings to us an amazing 2013 Mountain Song Odalisque Claro Walnut/Carpathian Acoustic Guitar, built by our very own Ken Jones. Ken is our primary luthier here at Dream Guitars for repair work. Ken, a proud member of the Guild of American Luthiers, also builds stringed instruments including custom, hand-built acoustic guitars and mandolins under the name Mountain Song Guitars nearby in Candler NC.  Recently we invited him to start building his amazing Mountain Song Guitars for us as well and this one certainly does not disappoint!!

The Odalisque is Ken’s original body shape and makes for a perfect midsize guitar that is about controlled power. For this guitar, Ken selected some beautiful highly figured Flamed Walnut and Carpathian Spruce. This guitar also features a Venetian Cutaway, a Custom Interlocking Ebony and Ziricote rosette, and comes with an Ameritage Hardshell case. “This is the best sounding Walnut guitar I’ve ever played . The bass projects perfectly, with a bit of OM style snap, the midrange is warm and lush and the trebles are sweet and blossom beautifully. Ken added wonderful touches including Armrest and Ribrest Bevel, Red Perfling lines around the entire guitar and an elegant Ziricote Fingerboard , Rosette and Bridge. Welcome Ken Jones to Dream Guitars!” – Paul Heumiller

“Ken Jones’ Mountain Song Guitars Odalisque is one of the best fingerstyle guitars I’ve ever played. It has beautiful woods and a perfect neck shape and size. The tone is balanced and clear with lots of sweetness in the high end and a nice controlled bass. I would buy it right now if I could. I love it.” – Al Petteway

Another note on Ken – He also offers individualized guitar building instruction ranging from one day workshops targeting specific aspects of the construction process, to long term courses covering the entire guitar-building process from wood selection all the way through to final setup.

“For me the best compliment I can give Ken Jones is that I have one of his Baritone Fan Fret guitars on order for 2014. I’ve been so impressed with the originality of his designs and most importantly the satisfying tone of his instruments that I just had to have one. Inspiration and passion are how I judge guitars and Mountain Song guitars have both in spades!” – Paul Heumiller

Brand New “Relic look” Guitar from Jim Merrill

Check this out! This is a Brand New “Relic look” guitar from Jim Merrill. Merrill guitars are synonymous with great prewar tone. Jim employs all the building techniques that made the old Martin guitars the ‘Holy Grails’ we all revere including premium woods, hide glue construction and even the sea snail dot inlays like Martin used.

This particular guitar is a custom “Relic” C-18 based on the 1937 Martin D-18 and aged by Jim to have the mojo of a 1930s guitar but you also get the flawless performance of a modern build by a most talented maker.

Full Specifications:

  • Hand carved neck
  • Hand carved braces
  • Hot hide glue build
  • Nitro-cellulose lacquer finish
  • Red spruce top and braces, antique maple bridge-plate
  • Ancient Honduras Mahogany back, sides, and neck
  • Ebony fingerboard and bridge
  • Brown tortoise celluloid binding and end-wedge
  • Cloth side reinforcement strips
  • Mahogany neck and tail block
  • Spanish Cedar kerfed lining
  • Sea Snail dot inlays (just like the old guitars)
  • Brazilian Rosewood headplate
  • MOP logo
  • Antique Elephant Ivory nut and saddle
  • Galalith bridge pins/end pin
  • Brown tortoise celluloid pickguard
  • Waverly 1129 tuners

Price: $7,895

Contact Us for More Info!! 828-658-9795 or sales@dreamguitars.com

 

 

Andrew White Guitars Now Available at Dream Guitars

For more than a decade, renowned West Virginia luthier Andrew White has built an amazing reputation. Andrew has become well known for his ability to successfully pair traditional and non-traditional elements such as fan frets and modified body shapes. Many of his personally handmade guitars now demand more than $10,000 per piece.

In his personal shop, Andrew builds only a handful of guitars each year. In an effort to bring his instruments to a larger audience, he partnered with a well respected Korean guitar manufacturer, Artec Sound Co. The result are instruments that are incredibly consistent in their voice and playability, making use of modern designs with an emphasis on high quality fit and finish.

Andrew and Artec have together created three body sizes including the Freja, Eos, and Cybele. Each of these models are also offered in a variety of different tone woods and options.

Over the years, Dream Guitars has consistently received requests from our fans to expand our offering to include quality instruments in the lower price range between $500 and $3,000. This year, Dream Guitars did just that by adding a handful of new, fine instruments within this range. Andrew White’s new line of quality manufactured guitars was a no-brainer to be included in this initial expansion.

“It was fate that when I saw Andrew at the Healdsburg Guitar Festival this year we were looking for great guitars in an entry level pricing and he has just launched his line. It is exactly the kind of guitar we were looking for, a modern design with serious tone and quality build. Our clients will love these!” – Paul Heumiller

“These Andrew White guitars have an incredibly consistent tone and playability. The neck feels good and seems to have a slightly smaller string spacing than standard which makes it easier to reach those bigger stretches. The fit and finish is really nice and the woods are beautiful. ” – Al Petteway

Dream Guitars currently carries a beautiful representation of each of Andrew’s manufactured models. Click Here to view our current
inventory.

Want to see one of these bad boys in action? Click Here to watch Al Petteway himself playing an Andrew White 100 NAT, only $599 at DG.

Dream Guitars Announces More Affordable Quality Acoustic Instruments

At Dream Guitars we are fortunate to have a clientele that includes the hard working guitarist you see play on a Friday night in your home town to some of the world’s top collectors. Over the years our site has become a favorite of guitar lovers the world over and we frequently receive letters of appreciation for all the hard work we do providing the most complete resource for handmade acoustic guitars on the planet.

Many of our fans have been asking for a wider range of instruments and we are listening. Until now we have rarely offered guitars under $3,000 but in an attempt to help all players find the best guitars on the planet we are now.

We are currently adding a hand picked selection of fine guitars, ukuleles and more from $400-3000 that include some brand new and exciting designs by names like:

  • Avian Guitars Designed By Michael Bashkin & Harry Fleishman
  • And more!!

Paul Heumiller himself and the team at Dream Guitars are choosing only truly fine guitars in every price range. So whether you need a workhorse guitar for bar gigs, a second guitar for a vacation home, or just a great guitar that won’t break the bank, DG will have it all.

We are very excited with this new expansion and thanks to all of our clients for telling us what you need and want from Dream Guitars.

Dream Guitars Now Carries Gold Tone Guitars

Dream Guitars has always specialized in the high-end instruments hand made by the finest luthiers. This remains our passion and purpose, but over the years we’ve had repeated requests to offer working man guitars suitable for stage and travel.

Many players and fans of DG were going unserved by us and they wanted us to be their shop. They trust us to choose only great instruments regardless of the price point.

So we set out to do just that.

We are now adding brands such as Gold Tone. Gold Tone was started by the husband and wife team of Wayne and Robyn Rogers whose goal is to produce professional quality instruments at an affordable price.

Gold Tone has now wound up on stages the world over with performers such as Bella Fleck, Bill Keith and Buddy Miller just to name a few.

Dream Guitars owner Paul Heumiller has this to say about Gold Tone, “One of the aspects of offering Gold Tone I’m most excited about is that the price point will give players a chance to try something new. Maybe a guitarist will try an Octave Mandolin or a Steel Guitar. Maybe a songwriter will get to try a Baritone guitar and be inspired in a new direction. To me that’s what makes Gold Tone special, they are truly about making music.”

We will be stocking a wide array of instruments from Gold Tone including Paul Beard Designed Resonators, Baritones, Mandolins, Octave Mandolins and more. We are also happy to order anything else you need. Just holler…

Gold Tone as well as other new brands such as Stonebridge, Composite Acoustic and Andrew White Guitars, are available for immediate purchase in our newly improved Online Store. Click Here to Browse!

Hot news from Tippin Guitars: New model, the Forte,
and two new Al Petteway Signature Models coming down the pike

Dream Guitars is proud to bring you some exciting news from Tippin Guitars including a brand new model and incoming DG inventory!!

Bill Tippin’s New Forte Model

First off, Bill Tippin introduced his newest creation, the Tippin Forte, at the recent Healdsburg Guitar Festival in California. This is a new model from him and is one of his most creative projects to date.

The Forte, based on his Crescendo model, was inspired by Tippin’s own personal guitar preferences. He found a way to boost the richness of the Crescendo — he increased the width of lower bout while maintaining the balance — and it’s slightly wider (3/16th”) at its widest.

Our own Paul Heumiller and Al Petteway had the privilege of playing the new Forte while out in Healdsburg. “The new Forte model from Bill Tippin has everything I love about the Crescendo, balance, clarity, power and Bill’s trademark full trebles, but it adds a bit more fullness to the bass for the player that enjoys a bit more thump in the chest. Outstanding!” – Paul H.

The Original Tippin Crescendo Model

The Crescendo, which is considered to be the cornerstone of Tippin’s entire line of guitars, is large yet versatile. Imagine a 14-fret OMT with the rich tone normally found in an 00012-fret size. The Crescendo manages to combine the feel of a 14-fret OMT while preserving the rich tone of a 12-fret body model, replete with incredible tone, balance and projection.

Dream Guitars has a pre-owned 2005 Crescendo in stock featuring Brazilian Rosewood and Carpathian Spruce – contact us if you’re interested in acquiring!

And, by the way, our own Paul Heumiller is anxiously awaiting to take delivery of his personal, custom Crescendo. Paul’s model is made from Brazilian/Moon spruce with a cutaway, MOP sparkle trim. What makes this custom job so unique is that it includes a short-scale, Fan Fret design, which will perform well in Drop-D, DADGAD and standard tunings.

The Tippin Al Petteway Signature Model

Also, Bill has embarked on a new build of the Tippin Al Petteway Signature, also based on the Crescendo model. Check out this video demonstration of the Petteway Signature on our YouTube channel. This instrument is representative of Bill at the top of his game, and when you listen to our studio recording you’ll understand what we mean. Interested in purchasing the incoming Tippin Al Petteway Signature model? Contact us today to learn more about your reservation options.

We do also have a pre-owned Al Petteway Signature in stock as well if you would rather not wait for the incoming guitar. This 2008 Crescendo Al Petteway Signature was actually originally purchased by Al Petteway himself and was the first Signature model ever made! This beauty features brick red Brazilian Rosewood, Moon Harvested European Spruce, an armrest bevel, beveled cutaway, and new heel design. Click here to learn more.

 
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