(We just received our annual shipment of Blazer and Henkes acoustic guitars – usually all spoken for before we even get them out of the box, but we had to share them. Check out all our Blazer and Henkes guitars here or check the links below. Also below, boss Jim Baggett shares why we love these guitars and what makes them such amazing instruments…)
The much anticipated arrival of Blazer and Henkes guitars has finally happened. It was a like a great holiday gift opening these up the other day. Normally the Blazers we order show up one or two at a time, but this year all five came the same day. This year’s batch includes D-18 style with a burst top, a D-18 with a natural finish, a Rosewood dreadnaught with a burst top, a Rosewood dread with a natural finish, and lastly a beautiful Rosewood OM with natural finish top. Knowing the high standards to which Rudie Blazer and Willi Henkes hold to, it’s no surprise that all five guitars are delightful to look at and to play.
My original association with Rudy and Willi was a result of our common interest in the great guitars of the 1930s. When they build guitars they have the great advantage of having access to a number of the finest vintage Martin and Gibson guitars. Their keen eyes, depth of understanding of wood, and high standards of craftsmanship result in new guitars that stand proud with the best of the 30s icons. I know that they compare their new guitars to great vintage guitars they have on hand – and when we receive them, we do the same. I come away thinking that the sound and feel of the new Blazer and Henkes must be very close to what players heard in 1937 – the sound that ended up giving these “Golden Era” guitars the reputation that they deserve. The sound and feel is automatically recognizable to anyone who is a fan of that era.
I feel that as players today we are so fortunate to have such a wide array of fabulous builders from our current era, making great guitars in many different styles, from the very traditional to the ultra modern. The Blazer and Henkes are definitely from the traditional style, and they have done an exceptional job.
(For more info on Blazer and Henkes guitars, check out Fretboard Journal’s 2011 interview with Rudie Blazer and our 2009 interview with Rudie.)