I am the French guy who bought a Jim Hall from you last year in June. This is the best!!! I even like to play it acoustically. The only problem is that I cannot blame anything on the guitar - only on my playing!!
April 12, 2006
I ordered a Jimmy Bruno model through Murch Music which arrived this morning. I just wanted to drop you an email to say you've done something very very right on this guitar. Plays like a dream, every note speaks clearly - I even play better: somehow I see stuff on the fingerboard that doesn't appear to me on my 165. It's so nice I'm going to sell a couple of guitars previusly considered never for sale, including my 165. The JB does the 165 and a whole bunch more. Major congrats on such a fine guitar.
March 14, 2006
Well, I've had it a week now, and it just keeps getting sweeter. A remarkable product. I commend the artistry of both yourself and Jim for your joint effort in creating the best guitar I've ever played.
March 10, 2006
About two months ago, I purchased a Sadowsky guitar from a gentleman in Southern California. According to the warranty card, it's a Jim Hall prototype - no signature on the headstock, no serial number, and the coloris a vintage amber (natural).
I've been playing since the 60's and in that time I have had countlessarchtop guitars - Gibson ES-125, ES-295, ES-175's, ES-165, two Barney Kessels, two D'Angelicos, Samicks, Arias, Yamahas, Corts. Currently I have two Yamaha AEX-1500's and a Heritage Johnny Smith (upgraded woods, tap-tuned, etc).
Now, about the Sadowsky -- oh my God! I don't know whether to play it or just sit and look at it. After 45 years of searching, thanks to you, I now own the guitar that has that magical sound that, up until now, has been available only in my imagination. Beautiful clear lows, articulated mids, and bell-like highs that are so nice and round. I primarily do chord-melody solos and alot of fingerstyle Rosewood stuff. With the 24 3/4 inch scale, the ebony fretboard and a neck that plays like butter, I can do it all with this one guitar. The pickup is "right on" and the tone control is just what it's supposed to be - a pot that actually controls the tone. Needless to say, my classical guitar is not getting much use these days, and the Heritage and the two Yamahas are in the closet. I know this guitar is intended to be primarily a working man's jazz box, but eq'ed properly, it's also pretty darned good for blues.
Aesthetically, this guitar is so tastefully understated. It simply reeks of class. I can't count the compliments I've had on the appearance, as well as the sound. I love the ebony appointments - what a nice change from all of the plastic, goldtone hardware, and "mother of plastoid" inlays. For years, I've commented that on most archtops, the really pretty wood is on the back where nobody sees it. The flamed maple top on the Sadowsky looks as gorgeous as it sounds!
Finally, a comment on Sadowsky flatwound strings. Never heard of them until now, but I've already ordered three extra sets. They are now my string of choice. I didn't think you could buy a better string than Thomastik-Infeld, but you can.
Roger, thank you and your team (and Jim Hall) for putting this guitar on the market. Hands down, for my style and what I perceive as "my sound", it'sthe best damned guitar I've ever played. And, I've played some high-end guitars including the Gibson LeGrand and the Citation. The only thing thatI can imagine that would be better than owning a Sadowsky Jim Hall Model is maybe owning two of them (or maybe three)!
Keep up the good work. Good luck and good fortune to all of you.
February 17, 2006
Just thought I'd give you an update on this guitar - I've owned it over a year now and it is well 'played in'. In a nutshell - I love it. My wife is relegated to the spare bed.
Seriously though - it is a wonderful instrument. It gives me a beautiful warm sound yet with clarity and separation in chords. I would describe it 's sound as light, very balanced, transparent if used with a good acoustic amp. Intonation perfect. Plays like butter. Looks great too. An instrument to be played with a gentle touch I feel. That suits me!
It has drawn a lot of comment from musicians I work with and quite a few punters too. I think I would have to go a long way to find another instrument like this. I appreciate everyone has their own views and taste in these matters but as far as I'm concerned it was exactly what I was looking and hoping for and more.
As regards amps I have an Acoustic Image Clarus & RE speaker cab (top class) but for a cheaper option I think the little AER Alpha 40 particularly suits the guitar - at least for my taste.
In summary - it's a dream.
All the best for 2006
January 1, 2006
I received my Sadowsky Jim Hall model from you early this year. The guitar is terrific. Everything I wanted. I play out with it once a week. People love the sound. And the look. This archtop is a wonderful instrument.
October 15, 2005
JIMMY BRUNO MODEL REVIEWED BY TOM SALVO:
I have to preface this review by saying that my new guitar was actually Jimmy's guitar. It is one of the prototypes made during the design process, so it differs from the production model. The neck is maple, rather than mahogany and it has two pickups. I did, however, play a production model once, and it is every bit as good after the modifications, if not better.
The body is smaller and thinner than the typical box - about 15" at the lower bout and about 2 3/4" deep at the rim. The scale length is 24 3/4". Ebony board with cat's eye markers.
The first thing I noticed is how good this guitar looks. The maple body is strikingly flamed. The finish is flawless. There is no inconsistency or waviness in the finish. The stain is even and smooth. The ebony appointments (bridge, tailpiece, fingerrest) are all high-quality. The next thing I realized is that it's very comfortable to play - the neck is rounded but not too thick or thin. The body size makes it easy to get your arms around it.
Plugged in (in this case, to a Polytone Mega Brute), it sounds fantastic. FANTASTIC. It is a vey vibrant and acoustic-sounding guitar. You'd NEVER think it was a laminate. Also, it doesn't have any of the muddy, nasally midrangy sound that is typical of other laminate boxes w/ built-in humbuckers. With the little Mega Brute CRANKED, playing alongside drums and playing RIGHT NEXT to the amp, there was NO feedback! Now, this is a situation in which my other hollow body archtops would have been howling and probably would have exploded. This one, however, was so reassuring that I could actually PLAY, and stand pretty much wherever I wanted (or needed) to. The fret job is the best in the business and intonation, with a good set up, is great. What a beautiful, high-quality guitar. What a joy to hold and play!
Best jazz guitar I've ever owned. Unless you are looking for a solid carved spruce top box to play acoustically, this is probably the best archtop on the market today. Totally blew me away.
October 11, 2005
(SENT TO JIMMY BRUNO)
I had the opportunity at the guitar show on Long Island to spend some time with Roger and play the JB model. Actually, I think I also played yours (thanks!). The guitar is fantastic. I think that the collaboration between you and Roger has yielded the best jazz guitar on the market today. Period. Your vision of what we need is right on the money.
I'm sure that this guitar is going to be a HUGE success and I will be passing the word on to everyone.
October 7, 2005
I received shipment of my new Jim Hall model yesterday from Bill Fender at Legato Guitars (serial A074). Let me first say that the tonal qualities of this instrument have me absolutely astounded. I simply can't believe how beautiful this guitar sounds! And, as far as looks are concerned, what could I possibly say? It's truly a marvel of construction.
Congratulations to you and your team for creating such an incredible instrument. I know that my life will be enriched greatly by owning it.
September 30, 2005
I just purchased a Jim Hall guitar, and I just had to let you know how great this guitar is. I cannot believe that a Japanese instrument can have the true "American" tone. It is the only one that I have ever encountered in twenty five years as a luthier, that has met the standard, and for that matter, surpassed it. The pickup is also superb. You really hit the bullseye with your specs, and Dimarzio is doing a great job for you.
You, along with Jim's input have made the most comfortable guitar to play on the market today. As soon as you rest your right wrist over the bridge, you realize that you incorporated ergonomic design into the saddle shape and string angle. It feels like you are resting on a hammock....no sharp angles or edges to dig into your hand. The body width is perfect, and the depth is just right for good tone, yet still affording comfort. Great scale length too. Now I know why all of the pros were hanging out at your booth at NAMM. It is a great product, and you should be commended for doing something no other company has been able to do before....make an off shore instrument that has the true American jazz sound. By the way, that is the nicest case ever!
Thanks for your efforts,
Trevor Lindsey Guitars
June 3, 2005
I received my Sadowsky Jim Hall Signature guitar last week and it is an understatement to say that I am extremely pleased with it. The guitar's setup is perfect, it plays like butter, the sound is clean, balanced and beautiful, and of course the instrument is unbelievably beautiful to look at and feel. Every surface, line, and detail is designed so artistically and yet practically that it is clear Roger and the rest of you have spent thousands of hours working this instrument out in every way. Everything from the machine heads and control knobs to the matching binding around the body to the neck shape and the unique headstock...everything whispers "first class." Besides being a great performing and studio instrument it is also an heirloom-class work of art.
Thank you so much.
June 1, 2005
I received my Jim Hall guitar yesterday and it is beautiful!!! It is everything I had hoped it would be and more......plays beautifully, looks tremendous and the sound is perfect . I'm very glad I made the choice to go with you folks and will play this guitar with pride. Please be assured that I would gladly show it to any prospective customers you might have in Southeastern NH.
Thanks for a great job.
April 7, 2005
I was just cruising the jazz guitar manufacturer sites and came upon your Jim Hall model. I just wanted to write to say that your FAQ left me slack-jawed. Those are exactly the questions a guitarist would ask. This may seem obvious to you but it is a very refreshing angle compared to most of the manufacturing world, where PR, hype and legal concerns are prime.
Keep up the good work and keep it real!
April 3, 2005
I received the Jim Hall guitar last Wednesday and am very happy with it. I think the guitar is wonderful and yes, it was worth the wait.
August 27, 2004
First, many thanks to you for creating such a superb instrument. I received my Jim Hall Signature last week and find it to be absolutely wonderful! The design is both functional and attractive; the tone and playability is exquisite; the setup is great (thanks to Frank for that). It was well worth waiting for. Also, please extend my thanks to Jim for his part in its development.
August 16, 2004
The guitar arrived safe and sound. This guitar is absolutely incredible. Acoustically, it sounds better than most carved instruments I've owned. I love the neck. It fits my hand perfect. I have found "The One." Thank you so much. It was well worth the wait.
July 19, 2004
My Jim Hall Archtop, A045, arrived yesterday afternoon and I wanted to let you know how pleased I am with the playability, appearance and sound of my instrument "right out of the box." It was worth the wait.
July 15, 2004
This is just to let you know I think the guitar is great -- at last I had the opportunity to try it at Dave Gillan's.
I drove up there yesterday and enjoyed his hospitality. He's a sincere guy and genuinely does all he can to help his customers. To my knowledge he is the only dealer catering for the jazz guitarist in the UK who gives this level of personal service.
You might recall I E-mailed you a while ago, before the guitar was even launched, when I heard you were prototyping an archtop jazz guitar - I listed various things I was looking for right down to the smaller 'Stromberg' type headstock, the 1 12/16 nut width, single humbucker, top quality laminate top etc. based on the unique style and sound of Jim's D'Aquisto.
No other guitar seemed to capture that great sound (even accepting a big part of that is down to Jim). I have tried so many archtops (mostly second hand) which have invariably flattered to deceive. Brittle or hard toned in the high registers, bass heavy etc etc. I even located a Fender D'Aquisto Ultra which was very disappointing. Archtops can be aesthetically beautiful and very beguiling but often they do not live up to their appearance.
I was delighted to see the instrument you have produced. It looks great and having tried it I now know it plays great and sounds great too. Nice singing and sweet tone, very balanced sound across the range, surprisingly good acoustic sound and absolutely lovely electric sound. Aesthetically it is beautiful - everything about it is just right, to my taste anyway. And a joy to play. What more can I say! I'm aware that the instrument is making quite an impact - I can see why. I had already made the decision to order one (that's why Dave had ordered two) but now I'm just hoping I can get one asap.
I'm a pro player and teacher based in the north of England -- I choose not to travel much but I'm well known in this area at jazz venues, local festivals etc. In fact we run a jazz club in Blaydon too -- 20th anniversary in Sep 2004. I'm not a rich collector -- just a working player wanting the right instrument to do the job. And I just found it.
Congratulations on coming up with a great guitar - I think you might have your work cut out dealing with demand over the coming years.
July 12, 2004