This week, we talk to one of the unsung heroes in the world of boutique guitars, Bruce VanWart of Collings Guitars. Bruce is the first official Collings employee and the one person who has touched nearly every instrument the company has produced since the late ’80s (almost 30,000 instruments). He reflects upon working alongside Bill Collings during the company’s earliest days, talks about his process evaluating wood for the company’s instruments and describes the 2018 re-launch of the Collings C-100. The C-100 was the brainchild of Bill Collings, a guitar with a dreadnought-sized lower bout with a skinnier upper bout and waist. Around 20 original C-100s were made in the mid-‘90s. They were reintroduced at the 2018 NAMM Show.
This episode is sponsored by Dying Breed Music, where there is an ever-growing inventory of vintage Martin and Gibson flattop guitars from the golden era.
Cory Wong is a force of nature: The thirty-something guitarist performs in Vulfpeck, the Fearless Flyers and on innumerable sessions. On this week’s podcast, we talk to Cory about the Minneapolis music scene (including his interactions over the years with Prince), why he loves clean amps and green screens, his impressive right-hand technique, Blake Mills and more.
Cory’s second album, The Optimist, is available for pre-order with all sorts of cool perks: https://www.corywongmusic.com
Acclaimed guitar repair guru Tom Crandall of TR Crandall Guitars joins us to talk about the making of two gorgeous videos currently on fretboardjournal.com. In the videos, Tom is shown doing his magic to two vintage Stella guitars, a 12 and 6-string. Both guitars required extensive restoration work and a neck reset. Tom also talks about his background as a largely self-taught luthier, current projects he's working on and much more.
This week, we welcome frequent FJ contributor Nathaniel Riverhorse Nakadate onto the podcast. Over the years, Riverhorse has penned some of our favorite articles for the FJ, including his features on Huey Long, Paul Buskirk and Darrell Scott. We talk to Riverhorse about the making of these features, his writing career (including his prolific work writing about fly fishing), his favorite guitars and much more.