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November 2019: in this issue:

Eight String Fan Fret
Perhaps the most popular acoustic guitar track of all time?
Walnut Tenor guitar for sale
Richard Hawley: Fylde Guitars and Nashville tuning
Remi Harris
Article in Acoustic Guitar Magazine
Strings that Jingle Merrily
Remi Harris Gypsy Guitar for sale
Electro Classic Guitar for sale
Bireli Lagrene
Adam Palma
New guitar for Chris Difford
Chris Difford's Custom Ariel for sale
Billy Watman and Lewduh Market

Will McNicol and Innotet
The Magnificent Five
Toby Hay
David Brown, Billy Joel, Elio Pace
Five Test Guitars
… and their Whisky equivalents
Jack Haigh
Gareth Evans
Martin Simpson
You wait ages for a Bass. Then four come along at once.
Sir Toby Bass for sale
Beatles Songs with a Baking Theme.
Evelyn Glennie

Eight String Fan Fret
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An astonishing instrument made in 2005 for a customer who needed a guitar with B-A tuning. It would have been easier with Nylon strings, but that wasn't the brief. The fret angles are extreme, but it's quite easy to play in the lower regions where the angles match the swing of the left hand.

Further up the neck, things get more interesting. Bending a note in one direction has a completely different effect to bending it in the other direction and moving across from one string to another is quite an adventure. Chord shapes are another world, they sort of invent themselves. Great fun and such a beautiful thing.

It is for sale. If you are interested, I can put you in touch with the owner. Price something like £6,000. Let me know and I'll pass it on.

Perhaps the most popular acoustic guitar track of all time?

That was a nice surprise wasn't it? Written and recorded on a 1979 Fylde Oberon by Brian Daly. He wrote to me at the time to say thank you and commented “whoever shaped the neck knew exactly what a guitar player needs”

Just look at the number of "views"!

Brian passed away a little while ago, and the guitar has a new owner. It might become available if anyone is interested. Just imagine playing it to your children or grandchildren?

Alex and Paul at work seem more impressed by this bit of Fylde history than by all "big names" we have supplied.

Walnut Tenor guitar for sale
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Walnut Tenor guitar

This was made alongside a standard model to display at Ullapool.

English grown Claro Walnut body, Cedar top. Mahogany neck, Ebony Fingerboard.

For sale £2250

Richard Hawley: Fylde Guitars and Nashville tuning

Richard sent me this, what a nice man he is.

Richard has a new album available now. Get it here.

Remi Harris

We saw Remi and Tom last week in Carlisle, and had a splendid time, the whole Fylde workforce, support team and catering crew were there. We catered quite a bit.

Remi still bases his set around Gypsy guitar but includes a lot of guitar history and several other guitar styles. Tom plays a big part as well, covering all the different styles on his left handed bass. I didn't realise before how close George Harrison's style was to some of Peter Green's riffs.

Remi and Dani have been really kind, selling lots of the Fylde Charity CD at their own gigs. Thanks Guys

Remi's site.

Article in Acoustic Guitar Magazine
Strings that Jingle Merrily


Our good friend Julie Bergman from Los Angeles came over to write this article recently. It's framed around the "Nimbles" album but digs a lot deeper as well.

Link to article online.

It is already producing more album orders. Thanks Julie.



That's a hint to buy the album for Christmas. Why haven't you bought it already?

The album has now passed its break-even point, which I am told is excellent after only six months. From now on, it's all charity!

Link to album.

Remi Harris Gypsy Guitar for sale

Again, made to display at Ullapool where it attracted a lot of interest, particularly on the day Remi was playing.

It's the typical Gypsy “crunchy” sound, set up with a low action but still loud. We can set it up differently if required.

For sale £3,900

  • Remi Harris Gypsy Guitar
 
 
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Electro Classic Guitar for sale
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I'll be honest, I had hoped Tim Edey would be at Ullapool. He always enjoys playing guitars like this, he often says he wants to buy a Fylde Guitar, and I had a cunning plan, but he didn't come so the plan didn't work.

Indian Rosewood and Cedar, 48mm neck, fitted with a Fishman Pro Blend pickup.

For sale £3,600. Don't tell Tim. Actually, do tell Tim.

Biréli Lagrène

I've had a lot of enquiries about Biréli's guitar,

This video is probably why. Once again, I feel really honoured to see our guitars in the hands of such players.

Adam Palma

I've received a number of great comments about Adam's "Chopin on guitar " project. Al Di Meola and Bireli Lagrene have been very supportive of Adam, and Tommy Emmanuel agrees with us all: Link to video

The video below is a good demonstration of what Tommy is talking about. You'll need to go forward to 43.00 to see Adam.

Adam's site.

New guitar for Chris Difford

Chris has a new custom-built Fylde guitar. Hopefully I will have some good pictures of it to show you soon.

In the meantime:

Chris Difford's Custom Ariel for sale:

Chris ordered this from us about four years ago, and he played it on the “Nimbles” CD. Now he has his new guitar, and this one is for sale.

It's an Ariel, but with a slim neck, only 43mm wide in fact, and fitted with a Headway FEQ pickup. Excellent condition, ideal for somebody, somewhere. I've only just noticed how beautiful the sides are, a lovely figured piece of Sapele

SOLD

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Billy Watman and lewduh Market

If you think you recognise the music, there is a good reason. It's “Riversong”, that Billy recorded for “Strings that Nimble Leap”

Mike English explained to me that film music might be chosen to exactly match the video, but that a more interesting approach can be to find something almost opposite, and just make sure the timing fits the film.

The film director spotted this track on YouTube and asked Billy's permission to use it. It's an unusual pairing, but it all worked out well, and the film won an award: read here more here

Billy's site

Will McNicol and Innotet

The vinyl has arrived. It certainly has.

It's a very impressive package, a heavy double fold cover with some lovely photography, and of course Will's splendid playing and the “magnificent” Innotet. You've probably already bought the CD, now you have the chance to “Go Large”.

I'm out of touch with the current popularity of Vinyl, but I've been watching Richard Hawley running a disco to see how it works. He holds one disc stationary while the turntable spins underneath it, then releases it at just the right time to blend into the previous track as it ends. I might be able to try it if I buy a double record deck and if somebody sends me another disc.

The Magnificent Five

Another picture taken from the Vinyl Sleeve.

Will “Fingers” McNicol, protected by his bodyguard, walks the streets of Glasgow in broad daylight, looking for any busker playing out of tune and giving them lessons whether they want them or not. Do you notice that they have scared everyone else off the streets? I'd step aside, wouldn't you?

Will's site.

Toby Hay

... and now I have the second Vinyl - anybody have a dual deck I can borrow?

Thanks Toby.

His record company is due here this week to make a film!

Toby's site.

David Brown, Billy Joel, Elio Pace

I received a phone call out of the blue from Elio Pace few days ago. Elio was touring “The Billy Joel Songbook” throughout Europe and the UK and had David Brown guesting. David bought a Falstaff guitar in 1979 and was the guitar player for most of Billy Joel's recordings.

They were discussing "the best guitar I ever had” and decided to google "Fylde Guitars" to find out where the Falstaff came from. They were only a few miles away and phoned me, a sort of three-way call between Elio, David and myself, great fun "catching up" on old times. I had David's Fylde Promo pic from 1979 on the wall, so I showed it to him over the phone. Unfortunately, it wasn't a video call, but it was funny at the time. Anyway, we were busy that evening or we would have been at the show. They have promised to visit next time.

If you are interested, the three players in the above photo are: David Spinoza (left) Mike Richmond (centre). David Brown (right) .

Five Test Guitars

The five matching guitars that I've been talking about for several months, shown here from the back. Left to right: Padauk, Amazon Rosewood, Vanuatu Blackwood, Brazilian Rosewood, Claro Walnut. All otherwise identical except for decorative detail.

So far, I've had Martin Simpson, Will McNicol, Clive Carroll, Richard Smith, Jule Maliscke, Hugh Burns, Prof. Chris Plack, and quite a few very serious amateurs play all five, sometimes with myself, Paul and Alex watching, listening and taking notes. There are more players “booked in”, and hopefully I will be able to identify some common thoughts.

One comment from a good friend, an excellent guitarist, which demonstrates some of the difficulty in talking about tone

“I don't like that one as much as the other one I didn't like”

I'm still trying to work that one out, but don't get it wrong, - he “liked” them all!

And a final note, even though I must keep them here for quite a while longer, and I haven't advertised them at all, I have already "sold" three of them.

... and their Whisky equivalents

Sent to me by a Bavarian Scholar, who has tested the guitars, given me a written analysis of their tone, and sent samples from his own collection of Single Malts to match each one. My sort of customer, but I'm not sure which one is which. I do like the thought of “GlenWalnut” though, or maybe “LochRosewood”

Jack Haigh

I told you I'd be featuring Jack more often.

Gareth Evans

Somebody else we don’t see much of. Some very clever playing.

Martin Simpson

Martin played nearby last week and came to visit. He is touring with his Sobell and two Fylde guitars at the moment. Plus, a banjo of course. Here he is testing out a new variation of the 12-fret guitar he is using.

It was a good night. Martin particularly enjoyed getting every single person in the audience to change seats. True, nearly.

Martin's website

You wait ages for a Bass. Then four come along at once.

Barnaby Stradling

I had a lovely email from Barnaby Stradling: Topette, Blowzabella, Eliza Carthy etc.

He wanted to say hi and thanks for the Magician Bass he's been making his living with for the last twenty years or so.

Suzy Starlite

A few days later, I had a mail from Simon Campbell and Suzy Starlite.

The Bass is one that I made years ago for Joss Clapp, (Kathryn Tickell etc), and Simon has recently taken delivery of the mandolin for their forthcoming acoustic album “The Coat”

Suzy has a folk background and was featured in Bass Guitar Magazine in 2018. Link to online-magazine

Simon released a contemporary folk / Americana album, ‘The Knife’ in 2014 which was produced by Andy Seward and featured some fantastic musicians including Andy Cutting, Malcolm Stitt, David Kilgallon and BJ Cole

Starlite-Campbell website

Sir Toby Bass for sale

The very next day, I had a mail from a customer wanting to sell his Sir Toby Bass from 1978. It's for sale, offers around £2,000. It's in a super Carlton case which by itself is worth about £1,000. Contact me if you are interested.

Then would you believe it, ten minutes later, I had an enquiry for an Acoustic Bass? This one doesn't suit unfortunately.

Beatles Songs with a Baking Theme

After much deliberation, the adjudicating committee has decided that the winner is:

Eight Cakes a Week.

Simple, to the point, and very relevant to us here at the workshop, although “eight flapjacks a week” would have been a bit better. “Eight pork pies a week” would have been better still.

You know who you are, you can claim your prizes soon.

Evelyn Glennie

I've followed this lady's career since she was a student. Just in case you don't know, Evelyn is profoundly deaf. You may have seen it before, but it's worth watching and listening to any number of times. I wonder what she would have to say about guitar tone and different woods.

Evelyn has a book out, “Listen World” it's on my Christmas list. Get it here