Have you ever wondered what it would be like to travel back in time, to observe Shakespeare writing by candlelight, giving voice to his tortured Hamlet — or to sit in the corner of a cold Dutch room watching Vincent Van Gogh turn a lifeless canvas into a post-impressionist masterwork?
Given the power to travel time, I would choose to watch Hoagy Carmichael spin out endless chordal variations of Stardust, and maybe later, I’d sit in on a Sidney Bechet session, and watch as the art of Jazz improvisation is being born.
Sadly, this is only the stuff of fantasy. Or is it?
Upcoming generations of guitar builders may not have a time machine to help seek out the advice and techniques of of the master builders — but now, they will have the next best thing — a rare peek into the mind of a master.
THE RESPONSIVE GUITAR
In writing his epic 2 Volume treatise, The Responsive Guitar, Ervin Somogyi has bestowed an invaluable gift to the future luthiers of the world, and also to the guitar community in general.
These two luxurious books, are deluxe leather-bound, numbered and signed, and housed in a protective slipcase. * Volume One is all about the fine points of making a successful guitar. This includes everything from materials analysis to theory of guitar acoustics and dynamics, as well as illuminating historical perspective.
Volume Two: Making the Responsive Guitar delves into the methods and procedures outlined in in Volume One. It emphasizes constructing the steel string guitar, but it also heavily touches on making the Spanish guitar too.
In Ervin’s own words, “This is a book about understanding and making the guitar as I know it, practice it, think about it, and appreciate it. It is a comprehensive method, covering material that other books stint on, or skip over entirely…”
45 years of experience — a lifetime devoted to the perfection of his art, is contained within the 650 pages of The Responsive Guitar. Adding to the text, are hundreds of detailed illustrations, diagrams and photographs. So not only can you read Ervin’s descriptions in plain, everyday language — but you can also see direct examples of those words in practice.
I am not a luthier, but I found these books a joy to read. They advanced my understand of the instruments I love, and gave me a rare view into the brilliance that goes into every Somogyi instrument. I have no doubt that The Responsive Guitar is essential reading for every new builder. Consuming these books feels less like reading, than it feels like thinking about guitars, and creative processes as Somogyi himself thinks.
Whether you are a neophyte or a professional, a player or a collector, there is a wealth of information here that can be found nowhere else. I encourage you to pick up a copy and enrich your understanding of the Somogyi process, and all things acoustic guitar.
Dream Guitars is proud to have such an important, informative resource to offer our clients. Please call for more information.
*Additionally, both books may be purchased individually, or in a non-leather bound 2 volume set. Call Dream Guitars for more information.