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Guitar Swap!

Guitar Swap!

guitars and text by John Calkin and Steve Kinnaird

previously published in American Lutherie #81, 2005

John Calkin: When I suggested to Texas luthier Steve Kinnaird that we build each other a guitar I had no specific agenda in mind. Though I spend my work weeks building acoustic guitar bodies for Huss & Dalton, I feel it’s important to build an occasional complete instrument just to keep in practice. Company policy prevented me from building flattops for sale but not from building for trade or gift. And frankly, I had enough nice guitars sitting around the house that I didn’t feel like building another for myself.

Trading guitars with Steve sounded like fun. We were already good friends who trusted each other, and we knew each other’s work well enough to know that we were on equal footing as luthiers. Most of the fun for me was in not telling Steve what I wanted or expected in my guitar. He, too, decided that surprise would be the most delicious element of the swap.

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