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Froggy Bottom C Deluxe
 
A 12-fret 00 with a contemporary feel.
December 14, 2020
 

Ever since he honed his guitarmaking chops in Michael Gurian’s famed New York and New Hampshire shops in the early 1970s, Froggy Bottom Guitars founder Michael Millard has been one of the most respected builders of custom steel-string flattop guitars. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Millard’s first guitar, and while Millard has announced his retirement upon the completion of a 50th anniversary series of guitars, Froggy Bottom’s team will continue under the leadership of Andy Mueller and Eric Goodenough, both long-time luthiers with the company. We’ve had the pleasure of demoing several Froggy Bottom guitars this year, and I recently had a chance to check out a model C Deluxe provided to us by Sylvan Music in Santa Cruz, California.

The Froggy Bottom C (for “Concert”) is based on the familiar Martin-style 12-fret 00 design. Not only does the Concert designation point to the fact that the dimensions of the model are about as close to those of a classical guitar as a steel-string can get, it also represents a tribute to the late classical guitar maker Thomas Humphrey (1948–2008), who Micheal Millard worked with at the Gurian shop. Our demo instrument was built with beautiful Indian rosewood back and sides and a top-notch Adirondack spruce top. Its “deluxe” trim package includes Froggy Bottom’s “#3” fingerboard inlay pattern in green abalone, a paula abalone rosette and back strip, bound peghead, and other cosmetic elements that set it apart from the company’s standard instruments. The guitar also includes an optional pyramid bridge. Every Froggy Bottom that has come through our studio has represented the highest level of materials, craftsmanship, and fit and finish available in today’s guitars, and the C Deluxe is no exception. 

The C Deluxe has a slimmer neck than those found on vintage-style 12-fret 00s, giving it the feel of a more modern instrument, and this contemporary character is also found in its highly refined, ultra-balanced tonality. The guitar was exceptionally fun to play fingerstyle, where it impressed with particularly elastic dynamics, allowing great detail when played softly, yet offering plenty of reserves when I dug in with my picking hand. Strumming and flatpicking also brought out the guitar’s balance and clarity, proving that even though the 00’s fundamental design is more than 100 years old, it is highly adaptable for modern players. 

The Froggy Bottom C Deluxe is guaranteed to please guitarists looking for a hot-rodded vintage design, but it’s also bound to surprise players who are more familiar with contemporary styles. As Froggy Bottom is a custom shop that offers many options for woods and appointments, anyone looking for a special high-end flattop should take a close look at the company’s instruments as it enters its sixth decade!

SPECS: 12-fret 00 body. Adirondack spruce top with X-bracing. Indian rosewood back and sides. Mahogany neck. Ebony fingerboard and pyramid bridge. 24¾-inch scale. 1¾-inch nut width. 2³/₁₆-inch string-spacing at the saddle. Waverly tuning machines. Made in the USA. $9,120 as shown (base models start at $8,695). froggybottomguitars.com

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© Copyright 2020 PegheadNation.com
 
 
    ● Courses
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
 
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
 
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
 
 
    ● Recordings
    ● Events
    ● Breaking News
 
 
    ● In The Studio
    ● Live Onstage
    ● Backroom
 
 
    ● New Products
    ● Inside Look
    ● Performances
    ● Partner Pages
 
 
© Copyright 2020 PegheadNation.com