There’s lots of music that may be performed with simply three strings.
That is one thing Salmon Arm luthier Ken Paterson has realized since constructing his first three-string field guitar. Now, 76 field guitars later, Paterson has change into adept each at taking part in the field guitar, and at constructing them for his enterprise, Artist Bench Guitars.
Modeled after the “cigar-box guitar,” however as an alternative constructed with stable, unique woods, every of Paterson’s guitars are one-of-a-kind artistic endeavors, from their typically unconventional elements (such because the Guiness can that was used for the bridge on a guitar constructed for Aquaman/Justice League actor Jason Momoa), to their customized paint jobs.
Paterson had by no means performed a field guitar earlier than constructing one, however he had his fill with the six-string selection.
“It’s a form of unusual transition – I airbrushed for about 30 years, I’ve performed bikes and airbrushed a lot of issues and I all the time favored taking part in the guitar,” mentioned Paterson. “I began out with a six-string years and years in the past, however I acquired completely pissed off with chords and music principle and all that stuff.”
About three years in the past, Paterson got here throughout a video on Youtube of Justin Johson playing a three-string shovel. When he heard that bluesy sound, Paterson began trying into three-string devices and determined to make his personal.
“The primary one I constructed, it form of failed as a result of I didn’t make the neck correctly,” mentioned Paterson. “After which I began doing extra analysis and began constructing them and simply fell in love with how easy they’re to play and the sound they created, particularly once you electrify them… They’re tremendous straightforward to play and you may play fairly effectively any track on a 3 string.”
Paterson harassed he doesn’t use cigar bins for his guitars as they’re tough to search out in Canada and the supplies used of their building don’t encourage confidence.
“I began making them out of unique woods like three-quarters-of-an-inch thick walnut,” mentioned Paterson. “There’s some weight to those guitars.”
The necks used on Paterson’s field guitars are the usual 25.5-inch guitar size, they usually are usually tuned to an open G, although he mentioned it’s infinite what they are often tuned to.
Tess Corps, Paterson’s associate and six-to-three string convert, mentioned there’s a neighborhood of fellow three-string gamers who share data and music on-line. Certainly one of them, Mark Piper, options one in all Paterson’s guitars on his Youtube channel, Uncle Mark’s Cigar Field Guitar Classes.
Paterson’s guitars are additionally performed by Momoa, who was gifted two of them by stunt folks working with him.
“He loves consuming Guinness so I used a Guinness can as a part of the bridge, and his tattoo is definitely on the floor of it,” mentioned Paterson of one of many guitars.
Talking of excellent publicity, Paterson and Corps have been additionally thrilled with the vibes at their Artist Bench Guitars tent on the 2019 Salmon Arm Roots and Blues Competition.
“The Roots and Blues Competition was simply wonderful as a result of, that was principally our first kick on the cat to get our identify on the market,” mentioned Paterson. “There was lots of guitar gamers coming round… They’d choose one up and I assure you, inside 5 minutes they’ve acquired it discovered. They have been doing chord adjustments and simply having a blast.”
Along with field guitars, Paterson has constructed a variety of three-string shovel guitars and even a few four-string field guitars. He’s additionally making a sequence of Flying-3 guitars (modeled after the long-lasting Gibson Flying V), together with a V designed in tribute to Eddie Van Halen.
“There’s no guidelines with this stuff; I’ve acquired free rein,” mentioned Paterson.
Artist Bench Guitars are at the moment out there by way of the corporate’s Fb web page, on reverb.com, they usually have a show at Strong City Studios in Ranchero.