I’m 70 years old and  have been involved with art, crafts and music for as long as I can remember. My journey of self realization through painting, sculpture, photography, songwriting and guitarmaking  has been an interesting one and I’ve been rewarded with a wonderful sense of fulfillment. Though I continue to create and make music my time is primarily devoted to the repair and maintenance of fretted instruments. 

I’m proud to serve the community of guitar players and cherish their respect and confidence. All the instruments I service receive the upmost respect. Whether it’s simply making an adjustment on a beginners guitar or performing extensive reconstruction on a masterpiece, the activity is essentially the same.  It is a process of identifying problems and applying appropriate solutions in an effective and artistic manner. A skillfully repaired and carefully adjusted instrument can sound and play better than  it did originally. The art of guitar repair is very much an act of re-creativity.

The concept of optimizing limitations was first taught to me by a cartoon character. Max Fleischer’s Old Betty Boop cartoons were still shown during the early fifties. My favorite character was Grampy. He was an inventor who would use common items in creative ways to solve problems. He would make a carousel for Betty’s infant by combining a phonograph with an umbrella.  Click on this link and watch him connect a  manifold from a gas range to a kettle of steaming water to make a flute that is played by gloves dangling from strings attached to the grill of a fan.  Grampy was a model of resourcefulness. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHog9UD8RSU

I received my formal training in art and design from the Industrial Design Departments of Brooklyn Technical High School and Pratt Institute. After receiving my Bachelor of Industrial Design degree in 1968 I taught high school level drafting and design for three years. This was followed by several years of research studying philosophy and various disciplines of self awareness. I drove a NYC taxi cab, worked in a fishery in Provincetown Mass. and built a bicycle shop in Williamstown Mass. It was there in 1974  that I reconnected with my close friend from college William Cumpiano. 

I helped William establish his first guitar making studio and in the process began to learn the art of Luthiery.  The craft offered a perfect balance of the various skills I acquired in the first thirty years of my life. Now forty  years since, our partnership is stronger than ever and I will always be grateful to Bill for introducing me to the craft. Any sense of fulfillment I may enjoy today is due, in no small measure, to my good fortune in meeting Bill Cumpiano in 1964 at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn N.Y. 

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                               INTRODUCTION