Currently we are hand building fine flat top acoustic guitars. I have developed 6 basic models that span a wide array of player's preferences.
* Gus Creek-Small bodied, Engelmann spruce top, Maple body guitar
* Wise River-Slope shoulder dreadnaught, Red spruce top, Mahogany body guitar
* Clark Fork-Slope shouldered dreadnaught, Red spruce top, Maple or Rosewood body guitar (cusomer choice).
* Petty Creek-Deep, small bodied shape. Regular and Elite model offered.
* Lolo Creek-Shallow bodied shape. Regular and Elite model offered.
* Ruby-Small bodied, jumbo shape. Regular and Elite model offered.
The website further defines the specifications of each model, which includes measurements on body depth, neck depth, the different woods used on each component, as well as any inlay.
MISSOULA - House of Fine Instruments
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - The Podium
LEXINGTON, MA - The Music Emporium
GERMANY - Bertram Music
JAPAN - Miki Musical Instruments
Continuous improvement is our objective, customer satisfaction our goal, and to build a fine quality instrument that you love to play, our target.
The guitar models are named after rivers and creeks that I have either fished, swam in or visited over the years.
The oval label located inside of my guitars is a picture painted by my grandfather, Stnley H. Walker. He was a pastel artist and this particular picture is named "Natures Wonderland", painted in the 1920's.
It started at the Flatiron Mandolin and Banjo Company in Bozeman Montana in the 1980's. While at Flatiron I worked with Eric Lange in the Banjo Department. After a couple of years, I transitioned to the Gibson Montana Division, which was also located in Bozeman. At the Gibson Montana Division I learned the art of building flat top acoustic guitars. During my tenure at Gibson Montana, along with Ren Ferguson, I developed the Custom Shop. During this time it was my privilege to build non-production instruments for artists and special orders. I was also involved in developing new models and tooling.
At the end of 1995, I left Gibson Montana Division and relocated in Seattle Washington. While I am proud of my work with Tacoma Guitars, I was most fortunate to have the opportunity to work with Michael Gurian. From him, I learned about a different aspect of the guitar industry as it relates to the manufacture of marquetry, rosettes, bridge and end pins, hand made specialty files and laser work (see our other links page for more information about Michael's business). In 2001, I had the opportunity to work with Steve Andersen, who is known for his fine Arch Top guitars as well as Mandolins (see our other links page for more information about Steve's instruments). The years with Steve were an invaluable experience, learning about innovation as well as working with a meticulous craftsman that can do it all.
Now, I have begun my own line of instruments, based on what I know, what I have learned, and what you prefer. My goal is to produce fine quality instruments that you will love playing. I look forward to working with you to achieve this goal.
John Walker & Deb Sonnenberg