Chicago-based outfit Maps & Atlases performs “Solid Ground” at the Guild Lounge.
Seattle’s Ed Diaz went a long way for his Guild D-44.
Diaz, who has played for nearly five decades and enjoys composing music, was living in upstate New York in the mid-’70s when he and a friend hitchhiked 70 miles to famed Manhattan retailer Manny’s Music. It was there that he purchased the richly resonant dreadnought model, which was introduced in 1965 with an unusual pearwood back and sides, with maple offered in 1971.
“As soon as I walked into the area displaying acoustic guitars, I saw the D-44 in a glass case,” recalled Diaz. “It did not take me long to make the decision to purchase it. It played and sounded fantastic!”
Diaz got exactly what he was looking for. The long trek had paid off.
“The maple body gave the guitar the brilliance and volume I wanted,” said Diaz. “The action was perfect and the Guild neck felt great.”
Almost 40 years later, Diaz said his Guild still plays like a charm.
“It’s got outstanding tone, playability, looks and craftsmanship,” said Diaz. “I especially like the neck.”
Further, Diaz – who calls his D-44 a “dear old friend” – has a few words of advice for those who don’t own a Guild yet.
“Do not hesitate to try a Guild when you are looking to purchase an acoustic guitar,” he said. “You hear so much about the ‘other’ big name brands, but if you don’t try a Guild, you’ll have no idea what you’re missing.”
Ludlow Guitars in Manhattan’s Lower East Side is a class-act New York destination for connoisseurs of fine instruments.
“In a supermarket, you can get 18 different kinds of sliced white bread,” says owner Jan Howell. “And if you know what you want, then that’s a perfectly good place to go. We’re not the supermarket; we’re the corner store.”
But Ludlow Guitars doesn’t discriminate. Although the store attracts mostly discerning musicians, its doors are open to all. Besides, it’s hard for the average bystander not to be captivated by the bedazzling eye-candy mounted on the store’s walls.
“Our objective is to get customers inside our store, and show them what we’ve got,” says Howell. “Then we want to wrap their arms around something they like, rather than having them end up with an instrument that might not be for them.”