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A. LoPrinzi LR-15
 
Orville Johnson demonstrates his 1970s dreadnought.
July 18, 2016

Peghead Nation’s Blues Guitar Instructor Orville Johnson owns many guitars, but he frequently returns to his A. LoPrinzi LR-15 dreadnought, which he purchased new in a Springfield, Illinois, guitar shop in the 1970s.

A pioneer in contemporary American guitar making, barber-tuned-luthier Augustino LoPrinzi began building guitars in the 1960s, and by the early ’70s, he was running a shop with 17 employees, making him one of the earliest small-shop alternatives to established brands such as Gibson and Martin. LoPrinzi’s efficient manufacturing process caught the attention of a young Bob Taylor, who has said that the advice he got from Augustino in the early days of Taylor Guitars was crucial in establishing his own building process. The original New Jersey LoPrinzi factory closed in 1980, but LoPrinzi returned to guitar making a few years later on a smaller scale, and today, his daughter Donna continues to build guitars and ukuleles in Clearwater, Florida (check out augustinoloprinzi.com for info on current instruments).

The LR-15 in this video is a dreadnought clearly based on the Martin D-28. It has a European spruce top, Brazilian rosewood back and sides, and a mahogany neck. In a departure from the practice of using the same wood for the fingerboard and bridge, the instrument has an ebony fingerboard and rosewood bridge. Perhaps this was due to LoPrinzi’s experience with classical guitars, where using lighter weight rosewood for the bridge is standard.

Orville played the guitar regularly until it required a neck reset a few years ago, which caused him to put it in the closet for a while, as it had become too difficult to play. But recently he had Seattle, Washington, luthier David Haxton do the necessary work, and he’s now enjoying being reaquainted with his old pickin’ pal. “I’ve gone through many, many, guitars, but on this one, every horrible scratch, every bit of damage, I did myself,” he says.

To study guitar with Orville Johnson, enroll in his Blues Guitar and/or Fingerstyle Blues Guitar course now!

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    ● Courses
    ● Live Workshops
    ● 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