I have been a part-time guitar builder since the early 1980’s when I built my first solid body electric with a power drill and a saber saw. In 1983 I was given a brief opportunity to learn archtop
guitar construction from an elderly cello maker with a shop in South Boston in exchange for my taking
him out on Saturdays to run errands. Those Saturdays yielded one archtop guitar body. Then, as often happens, life intervened. I finished the archtop 18 years later.
By the time I had completed it I realized that the process of archtop building resonated with me. As my interest in the process grew I became friends with renowned archtop maker Mark Campellone, whose work includes one of the Smithsonian Blue Guitars. Besides naming my SC archtop, Mark has cheerfully shared his knowledge, wood, Rolodex contacts and tools (not to mention his Italian cooking) with me. His generosity, experience and knowledge have helped me to grow as an archtop builder.
There is something very elegant about the archtop guitar. Whether it is the lovely curves, the exotic woods or the economy of the design, when I string one up and hear its voice for the first time, I feel that I have made something special.
I hope you like what you see here.
Chris Myers, Norton MA.
"Then all the trees of the forest will sing for joy" Psalm 96:12
The Orpheum is a traditional archtop design that is intended to create the tight, focused voice that is associated with the traditional archtop jazz guitar.
The SC's origins can be found in some of the later instruments of Jimmy D'Aquisto. In an attempt to broaden the functionality of the traditionally styled archtop, D'Aquisto created instruments with larger, more unconventional soundholes resulting in an archtop voice that approached that of the flattop guitar.
A non-refundable deposit of $500.00 will be required at the time the order is placed. Receipt of the deposit will put your order on the building schedule and will guarantee the price of the instrument. Specification changes to the instrument after the order has been placed will only be permitted if the relative progress of the guitar construction allows it. Balance due upon completion of the instrument.
My friend Rolly Brown plays a great arrangement of Thelonious Monk's 'Round Midnight' on his unamplified 16" SC.
Rolly Brown walks through the acoustic and electric attributes of his SC archtop which includes
a K&K Pure Archtop piezo pickup attached to the underside of the top, along with a floating Kent Armstrong humbucker attached to the pickguard.
Thumbwheel controls on the pickguard include a volume and tone control for the Armstrong as well as a volume control for the K&K.
The pickups are wired into a stereo Switchcraft output jack.