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Harrison Hughes Testimonial

IHHughes Headstock Custom Acoustic Guitar’ve been what I call a decent guitar player for almost twenty years. Even after several years in school for jazz guitar, I was only decent, not terrific. However, that never stopped me from loving and playing the best guitars. I am partly a gear-head but also convinced a great guitar can elevate, or the very least, inspire one’s abilities and willpower to want to practice and be better. Up until a fateful late-night Google search of Luthiers close to my home of New York City, I thought I had been playing the best, or at least the barometer of which all other guitars are judged: the Martin HD-28. I’ve had this beauty for almost 15 years. It was one of six at the store at which I bought it, and it sounded the best of the lot. I’ve accumulated other great guitars including a custom Tom Anderson Hollow Body Telecaster, a Gibson Montana Custom shop J-60, and a Taylor 914ce. As far as Luthiers, I had heard of the famous shops whose prices are in the upper 4 to 5 digits. I’ve played most of them at demos or in stores. The idea of owning a custom acoustic was always intriguing, but financially out of reach. However, on that fateful night of Google searching, I found what would elevate my perception of high quality instruments. That search led me to Bill Russo, and I am incredibly thankful for finding him.

First and foremost, Bill is a stand-up guy who I found myself calling unnecessarily and frequently with hardly any reason, but I enjoy talking guitars, woods, and all things in-between, and Bill took the receiving end of those discussions. Maybe I would come up with some minor excuse like discussing a different binding option, which would lead to a fascinating conversation about wood types and ultimately some great pieces of Koa binding for my guitar. Perhaps even more importantly, a friendship and level of trust came into play where I knew I was in good hands. There were several times when Bill would call me and ask what I wanted with this or that, and my reply was simply, whatever you think will look or sound best. And that is a safe answer with Bill.

1-dave-matthews-band-triple-000-custom-acoustic-guitar-front-photoAs a business-person, Bill’s only flaw is his honesty and inability to totally rip you off a-la the well-known custom shops. As a customer, aside from the finished product, this is his greatest selling point. I came away with a guitar that was so far above my expectations but yet so far within a reasonable budget. Had I known Bill when I bought my Martin or Taylor or Gibson, I wouldn’t have. And I’d certainly have some dollars to spare. My guitar pictures are under the photos tab as the DMB-000 model with the most stunning Zircote back and sides, sweet sounding Adirondack top and expertly-laid abalone rosettes and inlays. Whatever Bill does with the bracing–it really sings. This was my first 24.9 scale guitar and despite the 000 size, it sounds like a canon. I’m a short scale for life guy now. The most unexpected result of Bill’s methods is that it is hands-down the most balanced guitar I’ve ever heard. As far as playability, it’s like the neck and fret board were mixed with some hefty percentage of butter.

I’ve not touched the above-mentioned guitars since I received Stella (that’s what I named her!) In fact, I’ve since sold several of the above-mentioned guitars. No need to “play-down”. She sleeps next to the humidifier in case she gets cold and dry. We’ve already started discussing the next one we will build (I say “we” in the same capacity in which men say “we are pregnant” while the wife rolls her eyes). I’ve a hunch I’m going to have more of Bill’s guitars than I’ve room to store them in a short period of time. I need at least one of each possible model. Then we’ll do everything again, but in cutaways.

Thanks, Bill, for what I believe to be the most beautiful and best sounding guitar on the planet today. That is, until our next one is done.

~ Harrison Hughes, New York

Click Here to see the Gallery Photos of this Guitar

Zach Laskowski Performs Original Piece for upcoming WR Custom Guitars Video

Zach Laskowski of Anchour Studios performs an original song on a WR Custom Guitars Triple-000 built for Harrison Hughes of New York. The song lays down the foundation for an amazing new video we’re releasing this week which was produced for us by Anchour.

Harrison is an accomplished musician and it was easy to work with him as he has a solid understanding of the guitar building process. This was a very unique build as both Harrison and I collaborated and planned for many hours on the design and key performance characteristics of this guitar and selecting just the right components and materials for it. This was one of the most enjoyable builds I’ve undertaken yet. Harrison was very professional yet relaxed and very passionate about this custom acoustic guitar. There were certain elements that he really wanted to include but to his credit he left the final choices to my experienced touch. He was a lot of fun to work with and I was blessed with a new friend as we worked through some of the more challenging aspects of this build.

This was a very special custom build using the finest materials offered. We used Zircote back and sides, an Adirondack Spruce Top & Braces, and custom Koa marquetry and embellishments. This guitar produced one of the most open and warm sounds that I’ve built to date. The response and overtones are stunning. The guitar has immense power and sustain yet when played lightly displays a delicate, even balance. It’s set up with a super-low action and a slender and fast neck, so the playability is as good as it gets. This is the first guitar I’ve built using Zircote but it certainly won’t be the last. It’s rounded out with a Fishman Matrix Infinity preamp under-saddle transducer so whether playing this guitar acoustically or plugged in you’ve got the best of both worlds. This guitar truly could take the stage anywhere in the world.

Zach Laskowski WR Custom Guitars Triple 000

Here are some rough photos a friend snapped in the shop. We’ll have some real ones from our photographer Jose Leiva very soon!

HHughes Headstock Custom Acoustic Guitar

HHughes Back Custom Acoustic Guitar

HHughes Front Custom Acoustic Guitar