I've been feeling like I've been on the edge of something good for a while now ( a few years really). And I now find myself on the precipice of something big. A big big change in my building, my art and my life is just weeks away. This is what I'm trying to do now... all at once:
Write about guitars and guitar related topics for my favorite magazine.
Teach classes on how to build guitars.
Guitar Teching for bands.
Tour with a band as tech. (Big deal, big chance for me to add to something cool.)
I'm developing guitar related apps for the IPhone. (With waaaaay cool dudes.)
Teaching apprentice how to build and better his work.
Repairing guitars for a Store.
Restoring insane killer vintage guitars.
Working with an amp builder on cool things.
Taking pictures of cool art for guitar related projects.
Taking photo's for my articles.
Ok so that's a lot (yes I'm guitar obsesed, what else is new right?) but things are moving steadily in the right directions and I'm still learning more now about myself and my art. I realized this weekend, well the past few months really, that I'm doing exactly what I went to school for. Blending music and journalism and even incorporating the time I worked at the stores; the Fetus, Carlsons, and GC... Heck even my summer Photography studies in HS and my summer tours with bands in college are playing into what I'm doing now and what I'm going to do starting the next couple of months.
This summer will mark a change (for a while anyway) in the TLGuitars world and as such I will be able to re-commit myself to working more on and in all aspects of my art. Thanks to a couple of new work opportunities, a store to do repairs for and a tour with an artist I can't wait to aid, I will finally get to "go to work" during the day time hours and then have family time in the evenings- like every other working parent. The dream as a stand alone builder really. The year before the kids came I built 22 guitars. I'm hoping to push myself to see what I can do when given the chance of full time day hours again, and the most important thing, to work when the sunlight is filling the shop.
I guess the thing is, my existential moment has hit and I finally feel like it's all in my hand, under my control. It's a weird settling felling, resolved and steady... thank God for my wife, my love.
Friday, November 12, 2010
Friday, October 1, 2010
I just noticed that the magazine I write for has just updated and revamped it's website. I was out in Seattle visiting my brother a few months back and while I was there Jason and I spent some time walking the streets of downtown Seattle just to hang out for a while. He told me then that they were going to be redoing the site, "Just because" and that I should be on the look out. Well that was months ago and I am just checking now and man it looks great.
Big ups to the FJ guys for doing it up great... again!!The Fretboard Journal
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Ok, every once in a while I'm blessed with Kismet, and it seems to happen in twos. In college when I was working on my Michael Hedges research paper and I was let into the storage closets of his long time booking agent. I was able to photo copy his (Michaels) old press clippings, photos, promotional materials, contracts and tour riders.
Shortly after I was sitting behind stage at a Guided By Voices show that I booked and I told the backline tech I hired from the cities about my "Hedges paper." I quoted something from Acoustic Guitar magazine that I had been hanging onto pretty hard and he looked at me and said, "I said that! That was me!!" Turned out my "backline tech" was Michael's Front of House Sound tech and best friend for the last years of Michaels career. INSANE!!
It happened again in twos, see the pervious post for number 1, but the second instance was this.
I tech for a band in town and we did a show in WI where our opener was really good (I mean really, really, really good) but I didn't really pay much attention to who it was as I was meeting him during the changeover and after the show, I just remember I really liked what I heard. Fast forward 2 years and I'm on a short tour with the same local band and we were listening to my new favorite local WI artist turned "NPR top 10 albums of the decade" and one of the guys in the band says, "Hey Todd, don't you remember, he opened for us in WI."
Here's the deal, I've built my last 20 guitars to his album and ep, total shop staple, daily part of my build routine. Listening obsessively and all the while constantly thinking, "man I'd love to tech for him, wouldn't it be cool if..."
Kismet number two, a couple of weeks ago I get a call and from a referral from some other amazing friends guess who's guitars show up in my shop!
So a couple of weeks ago I was able to help out a local guitarmaker, I spent 2 days doing some simple tasks that required abs and manual labor, and while it was only 2 days I feel like I learned more during that time then I have in quite a while (no offense Bryan G and Sam... you guys are a close second).
The main thing I learned by working hard and watching harder was that I have no finesse in my building. I'm just working step by step, build by build. I need to plan and pre-assist my building the way he does. Build in those "double-check and pre-check steps into my work so I can stay as consistent as his guitars are. His work is the goal and the standard for me and now I know how much I have yet to work on.
While I was in his shop I came to realize that I was doing a step that wouldn't feel impact for 20 steps from the current step. He had FUTURE steps built into his process that I had never thought about. He is way smarter about his work then I have ever been and I need to acclimate to level of "think-it-through."
His is art with purpose.
I was happy to be of assistance to him. It was nice to work hard and really learn and re-strengthen my skills on the few steps I was able to do. It was an honor and I gained a lot from helping. I was happy to help a friend and mentor of sorts... who has put up with me, more then he should.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Acoustic Guitar Construction:
10 Class Period Slots plus 2 additional weekend build days TBD.
Students will build a Classic Pennsylvania Style OM, 25.34 scale acoustic guitar from scratch. We will make, thickness, shape, and assemble all parts of the guitar in class. Focus will be on the construction of the box, bracing the top and back, the rosette, the bridge, and the neck.
Class cost is $3,000.00 (Includes Cedar Creek Custom Case).
Electric Guitar Construction:
10 Class Period Slots plus 2 additional weekend build days TBD.
Students will build a Modern, Carved Maple Top, Double Cutaway, 25" scale Electric Guitar from scratch. We will make, thickness, shape, and assemble all parts of the guitar in class. Focus will be on neck to body construction, carving the top, shaping the neck and pre-planning for the wiring scheme.
Class Cost is $3,000.00 (Includes Cedar Creek Custom Case).
The Fundamentals of Guitar Design and Jiggery:
5 Class Periods.
This six week course will focus on the designing of a single instrument from start to finish. Students will follow the process of designing both an electric guitar and an acoustic guitar from it's origins on paper to it's final construction stages. The molds, jigs and fixturing process will be explained and blue printed so the student will leave with the ability to make their own guitars using the processes shown in class.
Class Cost is $1,500.00
With all classes students will receive a list of all personal tools needed for the class.
Monday, July 12, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Todd Lunneborg Guitars in Andover MN announces The School at TLGuitars.
After years of touring and production work Todd Lunneborg has decided to start teaching Guitar Construction classes from his home shop in Andover MN.
The School at TLGuitars will offer classes in Acoustic and Electric guitar construction as well as classes in both basic and advanced guitar design, tooling and jiggery.
“Minnesota is a modern hub for world class guitar makers, the best of the best are all here in Minnesota,” says Mr. Lunneborg, “If I can share that sense of local history, passion for guitars made locally, and have that translate over to my build students; what could be better?”
After the success of the first two Acoustic guitar construction classes, Todd decided to move from a local wood stores cabinet shop set-up classroom to his own shop in Andover.
“While my shop is a little out of the way for most people, there’s no match for a real guitar shop as a classroom setting, it’s already perfectly climate controlled and tooled up for any correction that my be needed, on the spot, during the education process,” Mr. Lunneborg said. “My shop is a much better space to learn the art of guitar making; that’s how I want to teach.”
Todd Lunneborg has been building and repairing guitars for nearly 20 years. Along with his regular customers, and new commissions, he is a regular contributor to the Fretboard Journal Magazine.
Todd Lunneborg Guitars
4420 158th Avenue NW
Andover, MN 55304