Luthiers

Herbert Riedl was born into a family of violin makers and grew up on the street where Höfner produced guitars including the world-famous Beatles bass. With his friends he earned money stacking wood behind the factory and later became a journeyman at Höfner. He stayed with the company, building...
Ewald Sommer’s grandfather, Ignatz Sommer, started building machine heads for stringed instruments in 1911. Early on, he supplied Höfner with his products for basses, guitars, mandolins, and zithers. Once the company resettled in Bubenreuth after World War II, Höfner’s successful Beatles bass...
Dana Bourgeois formed Bourgeois Guitars in 1993, having already worked as a luthier on several projects including those with Paul Reed Smith and Eric Schoenberg. His passion for guitar building began in college when he read Classic Guitar Construction by Irving Stone. His first repair shop was...
Pete Langdell grew up in Northern Vermont and takes great pride in the fact that he has lived and worked in the same area his entire life. When he had an opportunity to establish his own musical instrument company, Rigel, making mandolins and guitars, he insisted the factory be located in Vermont. ...
Ervin Somogyi began his career as a instrument repairman, which is how he learned the important elements of a guitar. He studied what went wrong with guitars, their weaknesses, and what he could do in designing and building his own guitars that would make them unique and stronger. He developed his...
Omer Deutsch’s career as a luthier was fueled by his passion for heavy metal rock. In college, he studied industrial design and later had a job outside of music. He dreamed of a day when he could design and create his own musical instruments for others to make music from. With his wife’s strong...
Merv Cargill was the owner of Cargill Custom Guitars. After completing an apprenticeship in violin making he learned the finer details of building wooden instruments and became a qualified luthier. Merv made the old Australian brand of Pacific Guitars until he turned his hand to his own custom...
Manuel Delgado is proudly following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather as a luthier of musical instruments. His grandfather began making classical guitars in 1928 and since that time the family has been involved with making over 40 different stringed instruments. Manuel builds several...
Marty Lanham first moved to Nashville in the early 1970s from San Francisco and soon set up his first workshop. He worked for Gruhn Guitars as a repairman for eight years while fine-turning his skills as a luthier. Country stars John Anderson and Marty Stuart are among those Marty has built and...
Evan Skopp is the president of Inside Track International, which is a boutique sales & marketing firm that works with luthiers and guitar manufacturers. He started out in music at an early age, playing the piano, cello, and guitar. After relocating to Santa Barbara for a job at a law firm, Evan...

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