was a real connection from the start between Ray LaMontagne
and our shop. We all love his music and he has a deep
connection to Maine, where our shop is located. When our
friends at Maple Leaf Music in Vermont called us to say that
Ray had come in to their shop and played their guitars and
ended up buying a D-150 , I was stoked enough to ask
them if they could have him give us a call if he had any
questions. He called and we ended up helping him find a
few other Bourgeois guitars to take on his 2011
continually strive to build tools that help musicians express
what they hear in their heads. It is an honor to work
with an artist like Ray LaMontagne. His music inspires
us to build the best guitars we can.
Ray and Dana Bourgeois backstage
Click on image to see more detail (photos
courtesy of The Music Emporium)
Here you see detail of the simple,
elegant inlay pattern that Ray and Dana decided to
use. And, the detail from the back and heel of the
on Ray LaMontagne:
"Ray and I started talking about a signature model back in the fall of 2010. His favorite, of several Bourgeois guitars that he owns, is a sitka topped Country Boy Dreadnought.
It’s the one he kept on the tour bus, in the hotel room and in the living room, handy to pick up whenever he needed to grab a guitar.
We both decided that a Signature Model based on a Country Boy ought to feature great sounding woods and understated decoration.
Our mantra for decorative elements became “just enough”.
To that end we decided on unfigured spruce and mahogany, ivoroid binding with simple black side purfling,
three color backstrip and three-color herringbone. Ray asked me if I had any simple fretboard inlay patterns; aside from slotted squares and diamonds I really didn’t.
So I came up with three different proposals and Ray ended up picking the one that I also liked. The Ray LaMontagne Signature Model is braced a little lighter than most of our bluegrass dreadnoughts, a feature inspired by Ray’s frequent use of E flat tuning. As such, these dreadnoughts work especially well in concert tuning with either light or medium gauge strings, and in a variety of alternate
Ray on His Ray
LaMontagne Signature Model:
time I laid hands on a Bourgeois guitar I knew I was playing
an extraordinary instrument. A friend of mine, Rick Tintle, a
cabinet maker and woodworker from Vermont who had been working
on the careful restoration of my 200 year old farm house in
the Berkshires had brought a few guitars from his extensive
collection for me to try.
first guitar he handed me was a Bourgeois Country Boy Deluxe,
figured mahogany, Adirondack Spruce, beautiful to behold.
I had heard good things about Dana’s guitars, but had
never played one myself. I sat on the bumper of Rick’s car
and strummed a single chord. I was immediately struck with the
clarity, tone and balance I was getting with just the flesh of
my thumb. One chord, and I remember looking over at Rick who
was grinning ear-to-ear and saying “Holy Shit!” That was
it. I was sold.
THE REST OF THE STORY HERE
are some pictures we took of one of the prototypes for the
(click on any
picture for a larger view)
Premium Master Grade Mahogany and a creamy silky Master Grade Sitka top.
to see the Dana Bourgeois Signature Herringbone against the
the DB Signature Backstrip.