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Taught to play guitar at the age of 13 by his Grandfather, it didn’t take long before Nigel became interested in how guitars were made. At 17, a teacher asked him what he’d like to do for a living, “make guitars” was the answer. Nigel was sent to see a chap who had been in touch with his school looking for an apprentice. Nigel Forster trained under and worked for Stefan Sobell from 1988-1990, 1992-2003. Setting up his own shop in 2004 Naturally his early "solo" work was heavily influenced by Sobell, but in recent years Nigel has found his own voice both aesthetically and sonically. These days Forster instruments are noted for their unusual "cylinder top" soundboard design, a design which promotes great power and clarity. Aesthetically, Nigel takes the mantra "form follows function" to almost an extreme, shunning may of the appointments popular amongst todays luthiers. Many of his customers play "Celtic" music in dropped tunings, and Forster guitars suit this style of music beautifully. The popular "Sobell" clarity is there for sure, but with added bass and warmth. His new "Session King" guitar is a recent development - where Nigel set to the task of designing a guitar specifically to cope with noisy Celtic music sessions, where the guitar often has to compete with pipes, fiddles, whistles and such - the Celtic equivalent of the "Banjo Killer." Dream Guitars is the exclusive USA dealer for Nigel's acoustic instruments.
My Grandfather taught me to play guitar when I was 13. I immediately became interested in how they were made. At 17, a teacher asked me what I’d like to do for a living? “Make guitars.” I said. He sent me to see a man who had been looking for an apprentice. He gave me a job. It was as easy as that. Apart from two years (1990-1992), I trained under English guitar maker Stefan Sobell from 1988 until late 2003. We made a lot of fine instruments together. My own business began in Newcastle, England in 2004. In 2015 we moved to Leipzig, Germany. A beautiful city – well worth a visit. Then in late 2018, we moved to south east Queensland, Australia. We live in the Gold Coast – between the sea and the mountains. Also – well worth a visit too. These days, I’m back at the workbench for most of the year.
Newcastle, United Kingdom
Ian Stephenson, Last Night's Fun, Johnny Dickinson, Martin Stephenson, Old Blind Dogs, Claire Mann, Andy and Margaret Watchorn
Model A, Model B, Model C, Model D, Model ES, Model F, Model J, Bouzouki, Mandolin
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