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  1. #1

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    Hi All.

    I am offering a 2011 Solomon Phidelity archtop guitar which I bought very early in 2012. I am its original owner and purchased it directly from Erich Solomon but picked it up at Rudy's Music in NYC. Barring a very few and very insignificant minor surface marks which cannot be photographed, the guitar is in excellent condition, close to as-new. It comes with its original Cedar Creek case.

    Rudy's was kind enough to provide me with an appraisal which I will gladly pass along to the buyer.

    This one has upgraded options which includes upgraded woods and a floating Kent Armstrong humbucker. It has a beautifully configured sound port and 13 frets to the body. It is currently strung with D'Addario bronze wound .12's.

    The upgraded woods are
    1. Adirondack (Red) Spruce top
    2. Highly figured Mahogany back and sides
    3. Cherrywood neck
    4. African Blackwood binding

    Note: Erich makes the point to say that this guitar is made of all high end woods and has no plastic or celluloid parts.

    The scale length of the guitar is 25.5".

    The model name, Phidelity, derives from Erich's inspiration to build a guitar based on the Golden Ratio, Phi, 1.618. You can google that to see its significance in art and design.

    There is the word 'Prototype' stamped inside the guitar body. That piece of wood was originally intended to be used in a prototype guitar that Erich was building, a project which he discarded. It has no effect on the finished guitar, which is not a prototype. I have an email from Erich explaining that. Other than that, the guitar has no issues.

    I am not a professional player and this guitar has never been played outside of my home. The room it's kept in is humidity controlled year round and the guitar shows no signs of climate-related issues. It's action seems perfect to me, as it came from Erich, and nothing has shifted, split, or separated.

    I was a long time guitar collector. I am selling it because I recently retired and my wife and I are considering downsizing our home so most of my guitars have to go. I held on to this one longer than most.

    I'm asking $4500 and at that price, I will include insured shipping to anywhere in CONUS. This guitar was $7249 when I bought it and today, with the same upgrade features, might exceed $8000. In addition, I believe Erich has about a year waiting period for a new one at this time.

    I am open to reasonable offers.

    Don't hesitate to contact me with any questions and thanks for looking.

    2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0165-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0166-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0169-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0167-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0170-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0172-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0173-jpg2011 Solomon Phidelity-img_0174-jpg
    Last edited by croth; 09-13-2019 at 01:21 PM. Reason: Update Information

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  3. #2

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    Extraordinary guitar and luthier. Erich Solomon is someone who flies under the radar.

    Is its back and rim of flamed mahogany? Edit: Appears to be Koa? Is it French Polished? I recall that Erich's mate and partner did the French Polishing for his guitars.

    Good luck with the sale. Wish I had the funds.

  4. #3
    Jabberwocky,

    Those are great questions. I didn't yet post the exact woods that were used because the paperwork that I (hope I) have for this guitar is put away in a safe and I have to retrieve it to check. I wanted to get the ad up right away so I thought I'd find those answers by tomorrow and edit the ad. If I had to guess based on my memory of almost 9 years ago, I'd say the top is Premium Adirondack Spruce (a $750 upgrade) and the back/sides are one of the 4A Premium woods, either Maple or Walnut ($500-1000 upgrade), but not Koa. I don't want to mislead anyone so no one should take those guesses as absolutes, but they definitely are upgraded woods.

    The guitar definitely is French Polished. I know that for sure. Erich has a family member who does the French Polishing, so you're close on that score.

    Thanks for the well-wishes. I wish you had the funds too! :-)

  5. #4

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    Erich’s fit,finish and playability is superb. Some of the finest fret work on any guitar I’ve owned. I actually owned a French polished Phidelity and it was a finger- style gem.

    As jabs stated - Erich flies under the radar - and it would be nice to see him get some well deserved recognition.

    Good luck with the sale - it’s a beautiful guitar.

  6. #5
    Thank you QAman. Erich does indeed "fly under the radar" but I've seen his name around over the years and I have seen a couple of his guitars both bought and sold. In fact, I have it on the word of staff members of Rudy's Guitars in NYC that Walter Becker purchased a Solomon guitar from them shortly before I bought this one.

    If anyone is interested in learning more about him, the New Hampshire Chronicle did a video story about Erich and his work which you can watch here:

    Edit: Oops! I see that in the video I posted, he mentions both Rudy's and Walter Becker. I hadn't watched the entire video before and didn't know that. I have in fact met Rudy a few times regarding a purchase of another guitar and the Walter Becker/Erich Solomon story was told to me, I believe, by Gordon, at the time his downtown store manager.

  7. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by croth View Post
    Thank you QAman. Erich does indeed "fly under the radar" but I've seen his name around over the years and I have seen a couple of his guitars both bought and sold. In fact, I have it on the word of staff members of Rudy's Guitars in NYC that Walter Becker purchased a Solomon guitar from them shortly before I bought this one.

    If anyone is interested in learning more about him, the New Hampshire Chronicle did a video story about Erich and his work which you can watch here:

    Edit: Oops! I see that in the video I posted, he mentions both Rudy's and Walter Becker. I hadn't watched the entire video before and didn't know that. I have in fact met Rudy a few times regarding a purchase of another guitar and the Walter Becker/Erich Solomon story was told to me, I believe, by Gordon, at the time his downtown store manager.
    I actually bought my Phidelity after playing it at Rudy’s. This was after I played all the great Archtops at the Soho shop. Gordon knows me through my network of guitar buddies and spoke very highly of the Solomon.

    I can certainly see another Solomon in my future some day.

    For those who want a great acoustic finger-style Archtop - this is a winner. The clarity and bass response will be fantastic

  8. #7
    It seems that our paths have crossed QAman and I wonder how long ago you tried out the Solomons in Rudy's shop?

    I do want to clarify (in case there's any misconception) that the guitar is not built with fingerstyle in mind though it would be well suited for that as well. In fact, I use a pick with it as apparently does Zeb Heintz, the guitarist playing the demo in the video. He is playing a Phidelity with a pick.

    Thinking that the guitar is for fingerstyle players would be doing it a great disservice. It is a jazz archtop and can be played in the style that the owner chooses.

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by croth View Post
    It seems that our paths have crossed QAman and I wonder how long ago you tried out the Solomons in Rudy's shop?

    I do want to clarify (in case there's any misconception) that the guitar is not built with fingerstyle in mind though it would be well suited for that as well. In fact, I use a pick with it as apparently does Zeb Heintz, the guitarist playing the demo in the video. He is playing a Phidelity with a pick.

    Thinking that the guitar is for fingerstyle players would be doing it a great disservice. It is a jazz archtop and can be played in the style that the owner chooses.
    Of course the Solomon is well suited to plectrum style. My opinion and expression of delight was based on my use of Archtop’s for fingerstyle Jazz playing - and the Solomon possess something that most other Archtops do not have.

    Most Archtops tend to be tight and bright when played fingerstyle - but not a Solomon.

    When played with a pick -its fat and warm - a real winner.

    GLWTS.
    Last edited by QAman; 08-10-2019 at 08:29 PM.

  10. #9
    Thanks for the clarification QAman. And your description is very helpful.

  11. #10
    The original ad posting has been updated with the woods that the guitar was built with.

  12. #11

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    I play carved archtops from a variety of builders and companies. Most of my guitars are quite different from each other, and they are all "as good as it gets" for the most part. I've been very lucky in that regard. I have the good fortune to play two Solomon archtop guitars, a Phidelity and an Imperial, and they are simply ..."as good as it gets." I agree with Croth that Erich's guitars are versatile and can be used effectively across a variety of styles.

    Of course, folks have personal perspectives and requirements that narrow their range of choice, but for those interested in 16" acoustic carved archtops, who don't really concern themselves with what happens beyond the 14th fret, there is no better choice than a Solomon (for those who need more upper-register access, Erich does offer his guitars with 14th fret neck joints, with cutaways, and so forth).

    I can't speak to the individual qualities of this guitar, but I have had the opportunity to play @10 Solomon archtops over the years, and almost of them have been fantastic acoustic archtops. Both of my Solomon guitars are superb-sounding acoustic instruments, with fantastic playability. His design concepts are innovative and original. Anyone interested in the sound of the 16" acoustic carved archtop guitar, who can step up, should seriously consider this guitar.

    Mine - different woods, different features, different scales, each uniquely wonderful instruments and, like Croth's guitar, fully realized expressions of Erich's design concepts:


    "Somebody get me out of this chair." - BOB WILLS
    Hammertone is a registered Hofnerologist.

  13. #12
    Really nice guitars Hammertone. I'm sure you enjoy them a great deal. Thanks for the additional information.

  14. #13
    I have been away for awhile, re-read my ad, and I see I didn't mention that I am open to reasonable offers.

    Besides, the ad deserves a bump up. So if you're interested, don't hesitate to message me with your offer.