Electric guitars are an innately difficult fray to stand out in. In a field brimming with eccentricity, design, and outright wacky reinterpretation of a now centuries-old instrument, it would seem innovation has never been more challenging. So when we say Scott Walker is doing something exceptional with electric guitars, we don’t mean it lightly. In our Top Shelf Luthier Series today, we are highlighting Scott Walker Guitars and further examining what it takes to be a truly world-class luthier in a field full of competing talent.
The Scott Walker Style
As stated on his website, Walker Electric Guitars are specialized, handcrafted guitars with originality and high build quality. More specifically, Walker’s brand of guitar building is celebrated for the degree of simultaneous discipline and reservation he devotes to every guitar. Where other makers use traditional American techniques which compartmentalize guitars and assemble them with a dizzying combination of screws and glue, Walker opts for simplicity; using ancient Japanese wedge techniques and carves larger shapes from single pieces of wood. Many of his models are composed of just 2 pieces of wood.
Walker’s long history of custom neck work plays into the strength of his luthiery; he is often revered for the quality, stability, and care that goes into each and every neck of his guitars.
Walker uses all degrees of style, material, and perspective to exact a vision of luthiery unlike any other guitars on the market The guitars themselves, praised for their aesthetic, also achieve amazing accolades for their rich and luxurious sound. For that, Scott Walker Guitars boasts an amazing line of original guitars, as unique as they are customizable to the players themselves.
The Luxurious Scott Walker Line
Walker’s amazing line of guitar models feature a rich array of aesthetics just as dynamic and thrilling as the sounds his guitars produce. For starters,the Solace is built with a solid alder body with a maple neck, whose truly inspired innovation is the special-designed blade style pickup, which is nested elegantly in a non-ferrous stainless steel “Cigar” tube. This shields the solitary single-coil pickup and in turn makes it quiet and great for the studio. Paired with its gorgeous finish options, this guitar is a daunting piece for musicality and design.
Meanwhile, the Attrezzo is as utilitarian as it is stunning. Following in the footsteps of early neck-through construction guitars, the Attrezzo takes on a high-performance focus and is ideal for a three single-coil configuration.
For an exotic steel guitar with a twist, the Araya is Inspired by the art deco 40′s and uses a 1/2″ thick Aluminum bridge sunk into the body to give it the growl and dramatic headroom it flaunts.
The Scott Walker line of guitars is seemingly as boundless as their design, but we’ll close by highlighting the Katana. This solid bodied electric guitar has come to be a favorite of Scott Walker himself, as well as of his many admirers around the world.
From his website:
“I spent 5 years setting neck and fitting dovetails while working at The Santa Cruz Guitar Company. This is where and when the idea of incorporating a Japanese-style neck joint came to me. And 10 years later it has come to reality.”
Simplicity is key to the success of this incredible showpiece. The body and neck are carefully woven together as the only two distinctive pieces in this work of art. No truss rod, no glue or screws, and no cavities – this gorgeous rock icon is a true testament to discipline and care. Walker noting:
“Using old air-dried woods, quarter sawed and stable really provides a strong resonant musical platform you won’t see or hear in any other guitar.”
World Class Is Worth It
The terms, ‘Internationally acclaimed” and “world-class” get tossed around a lot. They mean something, but not for everyone – in the case of Scott Walker, it’s earned. Scott Walker is nothing short of a world-class guitar maker, who employs skills across cultures and eras to ensure you enjoy guitar exceptionalism and engineering of the highest quality. He highlights the minimalism of Japanese engineering in concert with the thrill of American eccentricism to design electric guitars that embody the spirit and culture of Rock and Roll, all the while achieving amazing breakthroughs in the culture as a whole.