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Long-standing SCGS member Bill Hayter has a rather special guitar. Bill says...
Daniel Friederich was one of the most famous French luthiers. He died a few years ago. My guitar, No 169, was built by him in 1966, fairly early in his career. I bought it from my Singapore guitar teacher, Robert Luse, when I was living there. He had been given a top of the range Khono guitar and I suspect was quite pleased to get shot of the Friederich as it kept on developing buzzes
When I subsequently left Singapore for Australia, the difference in humidity was too much for it and the whole of the front face buckled and had to be replaced. In hind-sight I should have sent the guitar back to Friederich in Paris to get him to replace it but instead I asked an Australian guitar maker, John Hall, to make an exact replica of the face, which he did and also re-used the original rose.
It looked great but sadly the sound was disappointing, very flat. So I bought a new guitar and lent the Friederich to my niece in England, who was beginning to learn the guitar. Two or three years later, when back in England, I visited my niece and asked how she was getting on, she replied she had given up, so out of curiosity I gave the guitar an outing. What a revelation - it was transformed. Presumably the timber had had to take time to get bedded in. My niece was happy for me to take it back and the sound has been getting better ever since.
A few years ago I noticed that Kent Classical Guitars were selling two Friederich guitars of about the same vintage as mine, so I rang him up and explained about the new face and asked if I could compare the sound of mine with his guitars. He was very dismissive but was quite happy for me to try. In fact I was delighted that the sound was very similar. I asked him how much he was selling his Friedrichs for - £16,000! Sadly, my non original guitar will only be worth a fraction of that but, as I don't intend to sell it till my fingers are worn out, it makes no difference.
Stuart Christy recently re-polished the face and whilst doing so, took the opportunity to examine the lattice work, which he said was quite unusual. I believe Friederich experimented with all sorts of bracing but whether mine was a one off or not I don't know.
Read more about Dabiel Friederich at www.guitarsalon.com/luthier/daniel-friederich
Daniel Friederich (1932-2020)
The top and back view's of Bill's guitar
The Friedrich lablel
Southampton Classical Guitar Society celebrates its 50th birthday in 2022 with a full and exciting programme of events. Look at our Diary page for details of concerts, monthly meetings, workshops and much more. Why not become a member, get discounts on tickets, free access to members meetings, news about all our activities and a chance to meet other classical guitar enthusiasts of all playing abilities. Read more about joining SCGS.
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To be scheduled at one of our springtime Members Meeting...
A Recital by Tom Hodgkinson, a young guitarist and pupil of Rebecca Baulch.
To be scheduled in the summer
An event at
In the heart of the New Forest, the estate of Minstead Lodge is a magical and elegant woodland setting for a classical guitar event
This page features
an SCGS member
Discography and video
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