Dantzig guitars are built in a barn in rural New England—a region that boasts boutique vineyards, artisanal cheese makers, and bookbinders. It’s a place where people take time to create things by hand. In this setting Jol Dantzig creates instruments of character and integrity. They are not built to schedules, nor are they referred to as product.”
Jol has attracted a team of seasoned artisans with whom he works to bring each instrument to life. In an atmosphere of respect, they support and push each other to do their best work. In the workshop you won’t find value stream mapping or employee-empowerment campaigns—just old fashioned hard work and genuine camaraderie. It may not be politically correct to share a beer at the end of a long day, but it sure tastes good.
PHILOSOPHY: The Tribe of Excellence
If you can get Jol to talk about his design process, you’re never sure which way the conversation is going to turn. He’d rather show you a new pickup design or a basket-case vintage race car project that followed him home. Shop-talk is just as likely to touch upon archaeology or literature as it is Otis Rush and AC/DC. Dantzig’s world revolves around excellence and individual character. “Tedium shackles creativity,” is as close to a philosophy as you’ll get from him—the results speak for themselves.
Dantzig guitars are a blend of golden-age aesthetics and modern design. They recall a time when American hand-craftsmanship was the envy of the world and a man’s worth was measured by his character. Every Dantzig guitar is both a statement of purpose and personal narritive. Broken down to its most elemental core, each guitar is built around a theme of timeless individuality—a sort of pre-history that gives the guitar its soul. Imagined and created from the experience of a master-builder/storyteller at the top of his game, Dantzig and his team of artisans are a throwback to an American tradition of creativity and excellence.
THE DANTZIG GUITAR OWNER
When you acquire a Jol Dantzig Signature guitar, it is yours and yours alone. Each instrument is an original piece never to be repeated, which ensures that you possess something no-one else has. These are not inanimate appliances, they are the manifestation of Jol’s imagination born from sweat and hard work. From concept to completion every Signature guitar is unique with its own theme and history. When you plug in for the first time, it comes alive, ready for you to add to that story.
THE SIGNATURE SERIES CONCEPT
Each Signature guitar is hand-built—one example only. Due to the extreme amount of time required to craft each project, a maximum of four guitars per year will be built. Some feature original vintage parts, while others are crafted around a particular piece of tonewood. New parts are machined, cast, turned or carved to specification rather than relying on off the shelf items. Please refer to our builds in progress page for more detail.
The Signature Collection of guitars will be a group of seven instruments, each built to a specific and separate theme. The first three are Crow, Sakura and Hell’s Half Acre.
As each guitar is completed, it will be handled and played by musicians on stage, in the studio and in Dantzig’s shop—documented in photos and film. Upon completion of the entire collection, they will be shown in select venues across the country as a group.
All instruments are for sale, but cannot be delivered to buyers until after the collection has toured. An additional component is a book and a documentary film about the series (DVD included in the book).
Completion date unknown—this is a multi-year project.
ACQUIRING A DANTZIG SIGNATURE GUITAR
Like what you see? Then let’s discuss your own Dantzig Signature guitar.
Dantzig guitars are built on commission. Each instrument takes hundreds of hours of thought, sketching, and design—not to mention endless hours of hand construction. All for your enjoyment.
We invite serious inquiries—all builds are available until a deposit is received. email for a consultation.