2010 Jeff Sigurdson Harp Guitar
A Modern Dyer Style with Old World Craftsmanship
Canadian luthier Jeff Sigurdson may be one of the harp guitar world's best kept secrets. After quietly building over half a dozen Dyer-style instruments - each better than the last - I managed to talk him into building a couple for my constituents. Why? Because they're a great value, providing a high end, hand-built instrument at a mid-tier price. They also look and sound fantastic.
Jeff builds a modern Dyer variant, incorporating a few contemporary changes of his own, both inside and out. Though Jeff's specialty is now Flamenco guitars, he honed his steel string expertise during eight years at Larrivée Guitars, and it shows.
Woods were a joint decision, and include a beautiful Lutz spruce top combined with a ropey African Mahogany. Neither photographs easily - the Lutz shows up best in the soundhole image (top right), and the mahogany has a gorgeous glow and depth that cannot be captured.
Binding - both top and back - is flame maple, with an additional b/w/b strip on the top. I particularly like how he tied in the front, side and back maple borders at the sub-bass block. The silver "micro dot" fret markers and bridge inlays are a Larrivée trademark, a leftover influence of Jeff's time there. Abalone rosettes, ivoroid on the bass headstock, and a pearl headstock signature complete the trimmings.
The flat neck dovetail (ala Charles Hoffman) simplifies this time-consuming joint, while more time is spent on the internal bracing (using all hide glue construction) and glossy hand-rubbed catalyzed polyurethane varnish. Sub-bass nut posts are made of metal.
Tuners were chosen by myself - some very nice gold Gotoh GGSR 3-plate high quality, mid-priced tuners and 4:1 gold Czech tuners by Krishot.
To accommodate the most players, I requested a median 1-13/16" nut width. Adjustable truss rod included.
We included the "Discreet" Pickup-the-World system, which has a pre-amp built right into the end pin. Volume control is in the soundhole between the two string banks.
Acoustic tone is stellar. Lovely crisp overtones and moderately complex basses.
One of the best hand-built harp guitar values I've seen in ages.
- Gregg Miner, the "harp guitar pope"
DVDs by Stephen Bennett, John Doan, Muriel Anderson, Andy McKee,
Stacy Hobbs, Tom Shinness, Dan LaVoie, James Kline, Larry
Berwald, Bill Dutcher, Gregg Miner, Pasquale Taraffo
All Site Contents © 2006,
2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
PO Box 573155
Tarzana, CA 91357