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Australian builder Chris Melville has made guitars for greats like Tony McManus and Tommy Emmanuel. He builds a super clean and beautiful instrument based on tradition but with his own approach to voicing.  

People have often asked what made me start making guitars. The answer is connected to my upbringing. I loved playing the instrument but couldn’t afford a good one. So in 1988 I decided to have a go at making my own. After researching as much information as I could, (which wasn’t much in 1988) I proceeded to carefully build my first guitar. In those days there was no such thing as a kit containing pre-shaped parts etc, so everything was built from scratch using a minimum of tools. I went on to build one after another, each time learning more and adding my new insights to each instrument. I have now been building and repairing guitars full time for 30 years and have pretty much seen, played, repaired, prodded, poked and inspected, most of what is available. For me, the combination of building and repairing works well. I love the ‘problem solving’ and variety of repair work, and I get the privilege to work on and learn from, guitars that are part of the history of the instrument. For me, building guitars is where I’m able to take all that knowledge of what works, and what doesn’t work, and apply it to building my own guitars. So it’s not just understanding the aesthetics of fine woodworking, or how to achieve the ‘perceived’ ultimate sound, but being able to construct an instrument that will last a lifetime and continue to delight the player every time they pick it up.

The first Melville I played belongs to Tony McManus and I can still recall the clear and pristine voice. I was further impressed by the build quality. It's obvious that Chris Melville is passionate about guitars.
Brisbane, Australia
Tony McManus, Tommy Emmanuel
000, OM, Grand Auditorium
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