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Joined: 8/14/98 Posts: 15295
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Sad news for guitarists - Bill Collings passed away on Friday.

For those that know who he was, you know what a loss this is.

For those that don't, Bill Collings started building guitars a few decades ago in Austin, TX. He went from a medical school dropout to a boutique guitar builder, to the founder of what I believe is the best instrument shop on earth. He did it by believing in quality, and not hesitating to throw thousands of dollars worth of work product into a dumpster if he noticed one flaw.

I've played a lot of guitars in my life, and a few mandolins. With other quality manufacturers, I have found some of their stuff to be very good, and some to be average. Every Collings I have ever held has been extraordinary. They are beautifully built and sound incredible. They make you a better player. They bring joy.

Collings are expensive, but you are paying for great materials, and lots of hands-on work by the men and women in Austin. Nothing is done quickly. I've watched them work, and it is amazing. They sand, they chisel, and they talk to one another about what they are seeing and feeling. If they don't like it, they start over. In other words, you get what you pay for.

Other than the direct effect he had on the industry by building the best production instruments since the period of 1935-45 in Nazareth, 1950-52 in Fullerton, and 1959 in Kalamazoo, he raised the bar for every one else. Other guitar makers realized they had to make better instruments to compete.

There are a few small shops that can out-do Collings (Wayne Henderson; Blazer and Henkes), but nobody with any level of production. It is sad to lose such an artisan - there are so few left.

[Post edited by Hoodlum at 07/16/2017 2:45PM]

(In response to this post by Old Dorms Rule!)

Link: R.I.P., Mr. Collings

Posted: 07/16/2017 at 2:37PM


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