The 2015 Holy Grail Guitar Show was held the weekend of October 31 and November 1, 2015 in Berlin. This second edition of the show presented a selection of 115 luthiers from around the world. There was a lot to please the eyes and ears. You only need to watch the 5min video zapping below to be convinced.
2015 Holy Grail Guitar Show video zapping
The list of luthiers interviewed on The Guitar Channel
Here're the luthiers I interviewed during the week-end in Berlin. The full video will be made available to the Backstage Pass owners as soon as they are edited. The entries in bold are the interview published.
For the 1st day:
- Mika Tyÿska and Juha Ruokangas to talk about Mika's new guitar (Finland)
- Mika Tyÿska to talk about his new album (Finland)
- Adriano Sergio Ergon Guitars (Portugal)
- Egon Rauscher de SoulTool Guitars (Switzerland)
- Francisco Rodrigues - FanFret (Spain)
- Darko Milojevic - Leo Guitars (Germany)
- Peggy White - www.peggywhite.ca (Canada)
- Pierre-Marie Châteauneuf - www.pmcguitars.com (France)
- Gunnar Orn - Page Facebook de Orn Guitars (Island)
- Christian Bertram - Music Fund (Belgium)
- Hilko Nackaerts - Hilko Guitars (Belgium)
- Kaz - Jersey Girl Homemade Guitars (Japan)
For the 2nd day:
- Linda Manzer - www.manzer.com (Canada)
- Sharleen Simmons - www.simmonscustomguitars.com (Canada)
- Marc Lupien - XXL Guitars (Canada)
- Ted Astrand - Astrand Guitars (Sweden)
- Serge & John de Tao Guitars (Belgium)
- Rainer Tausch - www.tausch-guitars.de (Germany)
- Mikaël Spinger - www.springerguitars.com (France)
- Tobias Lund - TLL Guitars (Sweden)
- Seth Baccus - www.sethbaccus.com (Portugal)
My favorite electric guitar of the show
With 115 luthiers who brought each an average of 4 guitars, one quickly reaches more than 500 instruments to consider so you can guess it was difficult to make a choice to award my favorite in the electric guitar category.
I have already had the opportunity to present Serge and John Tao Guitars (www.taoguitars.com). Since I discovered their work in Issoudun in 2013, I admit I have a weakness for their instruments. So I decided to give my favorite award to the Guard Tao guitar which is their reinterpretation of the Telecaster so called Blackguard model from Fender.
Risk taking by Jean-Yves Alquier
Without wanting to play favorites for francophones, we must welcome the decision of the risk of Jean-Yves Alquier (www.alquierguitar.com) that revealed for the first time in Berlin a new range of instruments built in Bamboo, from 65% to 100 % for some models! Ethiq is the brand that introduced Jean-Yves for these instruments.
When you know how guitarists are attached to the wood species used for decades in modern lutherie, one realizes how Jean-Yves has showed a lot of courage to take such a risk and invest 3 years of work to explore innovative avenue like building guitars with Bamboo.
2015 Holy Grail Guitar Show conclusion
As the proverb says, Once lucky, twice you're good, the entire organizing team from the European Guitar Builders Association (www.europeanguitarbuilders.com) made this year an extraordinary job to put together a wonderful event, proving the success of last year was not a mere fluke but rather the first edition of a sustainable striving event which is becoming a regular appointment of the world best luthiers.
As last year there was for this edition a series of conferences that were held throughout the weekend during the show. The American author Kathryn Marie Dudley, I had the pleasure to interview with the publication of his book Guitar Makers, for example, was there for a conference (see video below).
It was also possible to try all the instruments presented and see them played professionally at mini-concerts that were partially filmed and that you can find on the YouTube channel of the Holy Grail Guitar Show.
During all these organized festivities, there were of course 1000 and one opportunites to meet and discuss with luthiers, to share with other guitar enthusiasts visiting the show and to forge strong links with the community guitar.
In short, this year again, I loved the show from one end to the other which is becoming more and more like a meeting place of the world best luthiers.
For more information about the show:
Until the next guitar show, keep on playing the guitar!