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YouTube Wren Guitar Works Group of Seven Guitar Project Whats New Wren Guitar Works


What's New




Hi Everyone!

    As time permits, I'll be adding content to this site.  As a convenient way (I hope) to find out if the site has changed since the last time you've logged on, I have added this page, which will document updates and supply links to the new content.


Please note that I'll be updating this site on a monthly basis rather than daily.



Wren Group of Seven Guitar Project


Well ... what a run it was ... and still may be! The Group of Seven Guitar Project wound up at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection on March 18th with another sold out show, this time featuring the inimitable William "Grit" Laskin doing his 2 1/2 hour "Give Me Wood And I'll Make It Sing" lecture, slide show and performance! There is talk of the show going to London now, but we'll have to wait and see.

This project was so special to me, that I've created my own personal informal digital "scrap book" of photos and memories that you can access now on the "Group of Seven Guitar Project" button at the top of most of the pages on my website. I hope you enjoy looking through the first new page on my site in ages!

At the same time, I've assembled most of my YouTube audio/video files on another page, and created a button for that as well ... thanks for watching!





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This one went to a good player in Paris who needed a guitar that had enough nuance and clarity for fingerstyle playing, but good headroom and some beef in the note fundamental for flatpicking as well. The top is Master Grade Lutz spruce and the back/sides are a stunning set of Madagascar rosewood. I'm really happy with the way it turned out, both sonically and visually!


Wren Guitar Works Wren Guitars Wren guitar Wren Guitar Works Wren guitars
Wren Guitar Works Wren Guitars Wren Guitar Works Wren guitar Wren Guitar Works



Here's a brief audio sample (with a bit of a slide show) of this guitar that I made shortly after stringing it up.






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The guitar on the left I built in 1975. That’s not that long ago. Let’s see … Pierre Trudeau was Prime Minister, the U.S. pulled out of Vietnam, Bill Gates started Microsoft, the Edmund Fitzgerald sank and the CN tower was completed! OK … so maybe it was a while ago!

I made my first guitar (a classical) in my dad’s garage over the winter of 1972-73 … then started my apprenticeship with Jean Larrivée in ’74 at which point I made an arched top mandolin under his guidance. Later in ’74 I received my first pro commission when a gentleman walked into the small shop on Mt Pleasant and asked Jean “do you make arched top jazz guitars” to which he responded “no, but he does”. I realized that I was the only other person in the room. Yikes! We drove to New York City a couple of weeks later and bought a set of cello wood from International Violin, and away I went.

This flattop from 1975 was my first pro flattop steel string and is essentially a Larrivée Concert model from that time period … but made by myself in Jean’s shop while I was still apprenticing. Jean encouraged us back in those days to make our own projects at night, so that we could get our skills up. Good times!

I was messing with the image of this 1975 example, and a current guitar … started making a collage and was going to put “1975” on the left and “2018” on the right, but it started looking too much like some kind of obituary! I left out the dates and included the image here just for fun anyway!





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I really feel for left handed guitar players. It just about killed me, not being able to play this one after I made it ... the feeling they have every time they walk into a music store! It was great to hear it played when my customer picked it up though ... and to get to work with another spectacular set of tonewoods ... from the European spruce top to this luscious set of Cocobolo ... I'm a lucky guy!


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Wren Guitar Works Wren Guitars Wren Guitar Works






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One of mine from 1985 that the original owner just brought back for some TLC. I made a series of these little 14" archtops, and this was the prototype. It was a thrill for me back then when a photo of this one made it into Fine Woodworking Magazine's annual Design Book issue!





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One of mine from 1984 ... guitar #151. Still with the original owner who was signed to Narada records at the time ... toured and recorded with it extensively, and has apparently played it every day for the last 33 years! I didn't make many maple guitars and not many bursts either. Nice to see a well used guitar that has been taken care of!




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Wren guitar

I know that it's not to everyone's taste, but I think this is one of my favorite looks in a guitar ... a bit of a retro feel, with a touch of modern thrown in. Here's one of my Modern Slope MS-1 models with a stunning set of Cocobolo, checkered binding, rope-bound Taj Mahal peghead with cast metal logo badge, Manzer wedge and RFX raised fingerboard extension!

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Here's a quick-and-nasty audio file I recorded (with a slideshow of the build process) shortly after I strung up this guitar for the first time.






New Wren Shop


Putting the new shop to bed after the first day of guitar work! Has anyone else underestimated how long it takes to move and re-setup a new shop? I'm loving the new setup and am looking forward to getting back to making wood dust!

Back in 2012 I closed my order book as I was getting booked up too far in advance. I've finally delivered all of those commissions and as of this morning have started taking orders again.

I'm now offering the cases with custom carbon fiber Hoffee flight cases.

Check out my Catalogue Page for the different models available and my Options Page for options.


Oct 15 Update

Well, that was fast ... I'm now booked until the end of 2018 and have closed my order book again! Please email me if you would like to be on my new waiting list. Thanks so much for your support everyone!






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Thanks to the folks at Japan's prestigeous "Acoustic Guitar" magazine for the segment and photos highlighting my JB-0 model! It still amazes me how word spreads in the digital age!





American Lutherie


   Thanks to Steve Denvir for writing this article and interviewing us for "American Lutherie" magazine ... and to the folks at the Guild of American Luthiers for including us in their prestigeous publication! What a great look back at the early Larrivee years!






Northwoods Seminar


What an incredible honour it was to be asked to teach at this year's Northwoods Seminar in Big Rapids Michigan! With folks like Dan Erlewine, Linda Manzer, Tom Ribbecke and Michi Matsuda in the audience, it was a nerve wracking experience to say the least!

To be included with all of these seminal figures in my field was truly gratifying. Thanks so much to Bryan Galloup and all of his luthiers (special thanks to the amazing Sam Guidry)!!!


Link to the Northwoods Facebook Page



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