Greg recently received the gift of a custom Lichty Guitar from his family. He worked with Jay on the design and the end result is an incredible guitar. Here is what Greg has to say …
“I just picked up my Custom acoustic guitar from Lichty Guitars and I’m speechless – the guitar is beyond my expectations. It’s the perfect guitar and a joy to play! Thank you so much to my grandparents for the anticipatory graduation gift!
Audio Sample played by Greg: https://soundcloud.com/gfactor/the-alchemist-new-guitar
Audio sample played by Jay:
Here’s the rundown
The guitar looks incredible, I especially love the grain on the back and the shape is unique but still has classic lines. It also allows for great upper neck access. Speaking of the neck it turned out exactly right, it fits my hand like a glove and the body has a slight wedge to it so it is very comfortable to play.
The sound of this guitar is head and shoulders above any other that I’ve played, the notes seem to jump right out and the tone has the perfect balance of brightness and warmth and is very responsive to slight changes playing so it sound dynamic and alive. The highs never get brittle or shrill and the lows never get muddy, even dense cords low on the neck ring out clear. The amount of volume this thing can produce is also astounding i mean it’s LOUD!
The builder Jay Lichty was a joy to work with and he involved me in every element of the design (I even got to hand-pick the woods in his shop!) and the craftsmanship is top-notch.
You can see the finished guitar and build shots here: Custom Acoustic Guitar, Cocobolo Alchemist with Sinker Redwood Top
It looks even better in person but very few people will ever get close enough to it to know that . His other instruments are amazing too, I’ve lost plenty of hours looking through his archives.
I could not be happier with this guitar! This post took me forever to write cause I have it in my lap and keep stopping halfway through sentences to play. - Greg Hendler
Shohei Toyoda is an acclaimed Japanese guitarist who recently won Japan’s 2012 National Fingerpicking Competition. He plays a custom Lichty Guitar.
Features: Cuban mahogany back and sides, Lutz spruce top, Mahogany neck, side sound port, Curly maple binding, redwood burl rosette and headplate, LR Baggs Anthem pick-up, Gotoh 510 tuners
… Love the depths of this guitar. I can clearly hear the low-end, and that is very helpful when I’m jamming with others because I can really concentrate on making the “groove”. The high-end does speak for itself too, so the balance on this guitar is perfect … Click here to read entire review
Geoff Achison is an internationally acclaimed guitarist, singer and songwriter.
We are proud to share that Geoff chose Lichty Guitars to build a custom guitar for his North American tours.
Custom OM Lichty Guitar: Cutaway body, Sapele back and sides, Sitka spruce top, Koa binding, Ebony fretboard and bridge, Cherry burl headplate, rosette and end graph, LR Baggs Anthem pick up, pearl inlay
Is your Lichty being played professionally?
I use the Lichty whilst on tour playing in a variety of environments from theaters & festivals to clubs and even small listening rooms.
Any comments about the specific materials used?
The first thing that strikes you is that the Lichty is a very attractive looking instrument which makes you want to pick it up in the first place. Besides knowing a lot about tone-woods, Jay is obviously very aware of how to get the ‘wow’ factor out of the final finish.
How would you describe the sound and tone?
The guitar is balanced in every way imaginable. Strumming the first few chords I was thrilled at how comfortable it felt in my hands. The action and general set-up is as perfect as I could hope for. The instrument projects beautifully and has a warm, balanced tone giving equal weight to sweet highs, punchy mids and a rich lower register. Getting to know a new axe, I like to strum an open chord and listen to its natural decay. The Lichty is a delight to listen to in this way delivering that lovely complexity you get when all six strings are resonating in perfect harmony then slowly dying away revealing slightly different harmonic overtones (and undertones) as it does. For me, it displays the guitar’s unique character and it’s the mark of a quality instrument when this method brings a smile to the player’s face – as the Lichty most certainly does. The more I play it the more I discover about its remarkably appealing voice. Whether performing or simply playing at home, my new Lichty has made me re-think what I expect from an acoustic guitar. Now when I play my mass-produced, factory built guitars, I can appreciate how precise and accurate those companies have been in developing those models – which are very good – but I can honestly say that whilst I have owned some nice guitars, nothing has impressed me more for tone, playability and sheer artisanship than my handcrafted Lichty.
How would you describe the sound and reliability/durability?
I’ve been travelling with my Lichty OM on the road the past few weeks and she has held up very nicely with no tweaks or adjustments necessary. That’s always a good sign.
How was working with Jay in the build process?
Jay was very enthusiastic about the project right off the bat and made it plain that he wanted to make a guitar that was as near to perfect as we could possibly get. He worked hard and asked me a ton of questions about many aspects of my playing and expectations – some of which I had never considered before. He discussed woods, construction, design and so on in as much detail as I’d care to know. We also had to install a pick-up in this guitar for my live playing. This was a challenge as I’d been used to a variety of on-board pre-amps in my acoustic guitars, which are very practical devices and deliver a great amount of control for the musician. However, I’d always felt that carving a big hole in the top of an acoustic guitar and filling it with wires and switches greatly affected the guitars natural resonance. How could it not? So we didn’t want to do that. After some discussion, suggestions and searching around we found the LR Baggs Anthem. This is an un-obtrusive mic/piezo style pick-up which has won over many leading acoustic players. The concept was appealing and the reviews were stunning. Jay was prepared to obtain one as an experiment which he did and then recorded examples of for me to hear via the internet. (I was in Australia at the time!) Through this we both agreed that the Anthem was a good bet and would not hurt the guitar if we decided to try something else. Well, I’m happy to say that we were right on the money. Touring with Jay’s beautiful guitar and having the LR Baggs Anthem to amplify with in a variety of venues proved to be a winning combination. I’d highly recommend that pick-up to anyone with a quality acoustic guitar that requires amplifying. It sounds natural, balanced and sweet and it won’t impair the tone one iota. Great choice Jay – thanks!
Overall rating on customer support / communication:
Very impressed with Jay’s ongoing concern that the guitar is performing as desired. Overall Rating: Gotta give it the full score. I can’t fault the guitar, service or support in any way. Very happy we met!
The Lichty OM is the first hand-crafted instrument I’ve ever owned and it’s changed my world! Playing and performing with the Lichty has made me to totally re-think what I expect from an acoustic guitar – wow!
More Handmade Acoustic Guitar reviews coming soon