Bourgeois Guitars

 

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About Bourgeois Guitars

Dana Bourgeois is known around the world for his superb craftsmanship and also as one of the foremost authorities on the voicing, selection and utilization of fine acoustic tonewoods.

 He selects and matches the woods for each guitar at the beginning of the production process and, once each guitar is complete, checks it from top to bottom insuring it is aesthetically perfect and sounds and plays up to the demanding Bourgeois standard. Throughout the production process you can find Dana applying bridges, spraying a sunburst top, buffing the final finish coat, selecting and applying pick guards as well as overseeing the eight other individuals working on the various facets of the guitars being built.

Dana’s career began when he built his first guitar in his dorm room at his alma mater, Bowdoin College in Maine. From there, using the knowledge he gained primarily from the repair of guitars, he launched into lutherie on a full-time basis in 1978.

His experience with a more extensive production came after he received a request from Eric Schoenberg to build an OM cutaway in the traditional design.  This initiated a decade long partnership with Schoenberg and the engagement of Martin Guitars in the final assembly of instruments designed by Dana and with tops he individually voiced. Over 300 guitars were built in this fashion bearing the Schoenberg label and carrying the signature of Dana’s design and sound. Dana was then retained by Paul Reed Smith Guitars in 1990 to spearhead acoustic development for the PRS organization, and later by Gibson Guitars to assist in construction and setup of their new production facility in Montana. With this experience and knowledge Dana went on to establish his own small-shop production company, Bourgeois Guitars in 1995.  In 2000, he co-founded Pantheon Guitars and currently oversees and participates in the design and annual construction of about 400 guitars bearing his name.  

All Pantheon guitars are handcrafted in Maine and carry the Bourgeois headstock signature which guarantees a level of quality that players and enthusiasts alike come to expect in fine steel string acoustic instruments. Located in an 1840’s mill in Lewiston, Maine, Dana and his fellow craftsman, most of who have been with him for years, build about 30 guitars a month and remain committed to each instrument as an individual. Every instrument is tweaked, shaved and prodded by expert hands. It starts with the wood selection by Dana, a foremost authority on the voicing, selection and utilization of fine acoustic tone woods and ends with each guitar “singing” usually while the entire shop crowds around to hear the pure and balanced tone of another great Bourgeois guitar.

As testimony to these great instruments, they have become a favorite of many professional country and bluegrass players, such as Ricky Skaggs, Bryan Sutton, Martin Simpson, Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek, Steve Earle, Ron Block,  Dan Tyminski and Marshall Crenshaw.  Bourgeois guitars are cherished by many serious musicians around the world, young and old.


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