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  1. #1

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    The collection assembled by Scott Chinery is up for sale.

    After D’Aquisto’s death in 1995, Chinery asked twenty-two of the world’s premier luthiers to build a guitar in tribute to D’Aquisto. The builders were encouraged to follow their own muse, however, there were two rules; The guitar had to be an 18 inch archtop and it had to be the exact same shade of blue as D’Aquisto’s Blue Centura Deluxe. The Blue Collection is the culmination of their work, featuring twenty-two of the finest Archtop Guitars ever created. This collection would be impossible to replicate. Sadly, several of the builders have passed on, making this collection an irreplaceable piece of history.

    They have faded to various shades.

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    For anyone hoping to have a chance at a single one of these guitars, it appears to be a sealed bid type auction for the entire collection. There’s no chance for a single guitar.

  4. #3

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    Thanks for pointing us to these wonderful photos and information - I've been lucky to have bought the Chinery book(s) at a time when the prices were not yet inflated so I'm familiar to the whole story ...
    Being forever a great lover of fine guitars and archtops in particular I'm also really torn, having real issues with how these guitars are played, how they are presented (and by whom) and where they will eventually end up. My (very personal) preference and idea of how an acoustic archtop guitar should sound like and be played stems from listening to Freddy Green, Bucky Pizzarelli, John Pisano, Matt Munisteri, Whit Smith, Julian Lage, Jonathan Stout and a few others.
    But what are we hearing on this site : Joe Bonamassa ripping through some speedy blues licks, the talented Nir Felder tickling out a few singlelines, as does Paul Ricci (who sounds wonderful playing his electric Koll guitars) - not one of them is demonstrating how these guitars can sound when played like they originally were meant to be played : chomping out chords , driving the rhythm section along with bass and drums. Likewise no one is playing something along the lines of Eddie Lang, Dick McDonough, Carl Cress, Alan Reuss, Nick Lucas, or any other virtuoso from the 20's, 30's and 40's when these guitars were heard on almost every hit song on the radio. Matt Munisteri plays Eddie Lang/Nick Lucas pieces and Jonathan Stout is a master in the style of Alan Reuss (and others) but in the interest of reaching a wider audience and potential buyers the seller gives preference to other players to showcase the guitars.

    As much as I love the feel, the lines, the workmanship of and the history behind these wonderful instruments, I generally prefer the sound they produce with the help of a pickup (except when using them for strict comping in a band context). Their response,
    attack and specifically short sustain in combination with the strong lower midrange boost of most pickups and the common use of flatwound strings produce a sound that can be either dark and mellow or bright(-ish) and lively, useable in any musical context.
    Jimmy D'Aquisto is often quoted with having said that his guitars (good archtops in general, really) can be used to play ANY type of guitar music, from Bach and Carcassi to Blues to Bluegrass and Bebop and beyond. While I can confirm most of this statement I have yet to hear a convincing performance of a Dowland, Bach or Villa Lobos solo piece on an archtop guitar ... Likewise a player like Julian Lage or Pasquale Grasso would surely be capable of playing a Cello Sonata or Violin Capriccio on their guitars but have they done so, or anybody else ?
    Please excuse my rant and random thoughts - YMMD

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by gitman
    Thanks for pointing us to these wonderful photos and information - I've been lucky to have bought the Chinery book(s) at a time when the prices were not yet inflated so I'm familiar to the whole story ...
    Being forever a great lover of fine guitars and archtops in particular I'm also really torn, having real issues with how these guitars are played, how they are presented (and by whom) and where they will eventually end up. My (very personal) preference and idea of how an acoustic archtop guitar should sound like and be played stems from listening to Freddy Green, Bucky Pizzarelli, John Pisano, Matt Munisteri, Whit Smith, Julian Lage, Jonathan Stout and a few others.
    But what are we hearing on this site : Joe Bonamassa ripping through some speedy blues licks, the talented Nir Felder tickling out a few singlelines, as does Paul Ricci (who sounds wonderful playing his electric Koll guitars) - not one of them is demonstrating how these guitars can sound when played like they originally were meant to be played : chomping out chords , driving the rhythm section along with bass and drums. Likewise no one is playing something along the lines of Eddie Lang, Dick McDonough, Carl Cress, Alan Reuss, Nick Lucas, or any other virtuoso from the 20's, 30's and 40's when these guitars were heard on almost every hit song on the radio. Matt Munisteri plays Eddie Lang/Nick Lucas pieces and Jonathan Stout is a master in the style of Alan Reuss (and others) but in the interest of reaching a wider audience and potential buyers the seller gives preference to other players to showcase the guitars.

    As much as I love the feel, the lines, the workmanship of and the history behind these wonderful instruments, I generally prefer the sound they produce with the help of a pickup (except when using them for strict comping in a band context). Their response,
    attack and specifically short sustain in combination with the strong lower midrange boost of most pickups and the common use of flatwound strings produce a sound that can be either dark and mellow or bright(-ish) and lively, useable in any musical context.
    Jimmy D'Aquisto is often quoted with having said that his guitars (good archtops in general, really) can be used to play ANY type of guitar music, from Bach and Carcassi to Blues to Bluegrass and Bebop and beyond. While I can confirm most of this statement I have yet to hear a convincing performance of a Dowland, Bach or Villa Lobos solo piece on an archtop guitar ... Likewise a player like Julian Lage or Pasquale Grasso would surely be capable of playing a Cello Sonata or Violin Capriccio on their guitars but have they done so, or anybody else ?
    Please excuse my rant and random thoughts - YMMD
    Just going to drop this here for you. Sorry that it’s off topic.



    Last edited by ThatRhythmMan; 10-16-2021 at 11:18 AM.

  6. #5

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    Blue guitars-r-2875843-1375403353-6610-jpeg-jpg

  7. #6

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    One of the great ironies of life is that Scott Chinery, a man who made a fortune selling health related products died so young. I read an interview with him where he stated that he wanted his collection to be preserved after his death intact for the public to view and enjoy. He never brought that view into an estate plan and so his collection was sold after his death creating an unforeseen windfall for his heirs.

    Now his heirs are ready to capitalize again by selling this collection. Some wealthy person will get the Blue guitars and enjoy some bragging rights at their next cocktail party. The guitars will probably see little play and will exist as part of a private art collection. Such is life.

    It is a nice collection of guitars, but as the saying goes "too rich for my blood".

  8. #7

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    Lots of nice silking on those tops!

    Beyond that:

    • I like the Super 400 best (oops, is that a crime?)
    • The Benedetto back is incredible. Looks like water or something. Great headstock too
    • Love the wood binding on the Monteleone
    • The overall shape of the D'Aquisto speaks for itself, along with the wood headstock, pick guard and tailpiece
    • Campellone's quilted maple is very special, cool pick guard and tailpiece, great color overall
    • Buscarino Virtuoso has incredible silking, nice blue inlays, wood binding and nice back color
    • The Lacey Virtuoso looks great. A design that includes other classic styles, all in one. Nice silking, wood pickguard and great book matching on the back too
    • Triggs has a cool headstock
    • Walker - unique color and great features throughout


    OK, maybe the Lacey...
    Last edited by Donplaysguitar; 10-16-2021 at 01:23 PM.

  9. #8

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    I would only want the Hollenbeck from my late friend Bill. I great guitar I spent a lot of time with it in particular. I played them all. Bill’s was a great sounding guitar lots of wood moving sound.

    I dare say there were some, not many very few in fact, that were that did not sound good. No comment on which.

    Now time has passed wow. More than 20 years ago close to 25.

  10. #9

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    At the Chinery house that evening I met Tal Farlow spoke to him a bit. He was reserved but very nice. I remember his large hands were always brought up. I did notice they were large but he was shorter than me in height by a bit.

    Met Scotty Moore too an others I probably have forgot.

    My question to forum was anyone else at the evening party Scot held?

    My favorite outside of Bills was John Monteleone’s. John is an outstanding craftsman and even more outstanding gentleman.

    I have my Chinery Blue Book signed by each of the makers too.
    Last edited by deacon Mark; 10-16-2021 at 02:20 PM.

  11. #10

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    It would be nice to hear a little clip of each, wouldn't it?

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatRhythmMan
    Just going to drop this here for you. Sorry that it’s off topic.



    Those sound like nylon strings in the first video. Both are amazing.

  13. #12

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    My guess is that he used coated or even flatwound strings - there's almost no fingernoise , also/mostly due to a very refined technique - with normal roundwound strings it wouldn't be possible and the guitar would sound much brighter. Here the guitar sounds quite different, with roundwounds :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9vUXVb1ghI

    Slaman offers an archtop with nylonstrings but the demo's I've heard were not very exciting... those soft and relatively low-tension nylonstrings don't drive a top like the heavy load of a set of 12's or 14's would.
    The progress re nylonstring guitars and their volume/tone/versatility is happening elsewhere.

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by gitman
    My guess is that he used coated or even flatwound strings - there's almost no fingernoise , also/mostly due to a very refined technique - with normal roundwound strings it wouldn't be possible and the guitar would sound much brighter. Here the guitar sounds quite different, with roundwounds :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9vUXVb1ghI

    Slaman offers an archtop with nylonstrings but the demo's I've heard were not very exciting... those soft and relatively low-tension nylonstrings don't drive a top like the heavy load of a set of 12's or 14's would.
    The progress re nylonstring guitars and their volume/tone/versatility is happening elsewhere.
    He used Dogal 80/20 flatwounds

  15. #14

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    Have to thank Scott Chinery for creating such interest in arch tops again. Really presented a whole new plethora of talented young luthiers to the world.