4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Ian Anderson Builds One for the Books

“I’ve sold more guitars in New Jersey than I have in San Diego.” Ian Anderson, luthier, says this by phone from his shop in San Marcos more as an observation than a complaint. “Nobody locally really knows about me,” which he admits is his own fault.

In a good year, Anderson will handcraft 25 custom guitars and sell them to clients around the world. His axes are played in Turkey, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Sweden, and England. “When you build guitars that sell for 5000 dollars, you kind of eliminate most of the local market. It’s really just the high-end guitar aficionados that, you know, buy my guitars. Thanks to the internet, my market is global.”

During the same conversation, Anderson says he just got word that one of his guitars will be included in an artsy guitar book slated for November release. It’s called Electrified: The Art of the Contemporary Electric Guitar, by Robert Shaw (Sterling Signature ISBN-10:1402747748.) He thinks the book may help showcase his work to domestic audiences. “It’s a coffee-table book. It’ll be available in all the big stores. It’s kind of cool, you know. It legitimizes what I’m doing and kind of cements it into history, at least for the life of the book.”

Anderson’s designs all have serious amounts of classic electric guitar DNA in them. They look like the sort of six-stringed offspring one might expect would be the result of a Fender Telecaster-Gibson Les Paul marriage, warped ever-so-slightly in the way of those funky Mosrites from the era of surf rock. “People seem to always want that vintage style of guitar that was perfected in those years, from the ‘40s to the early ‘60s.” Of the stuff that Anderson’s designing and building now, he says it is a match for the player that wants vintage “but can’t afford a 300,000-dollar ’59 'burst, you know?”

Anderson, who is 40, and therefore was born outside the golden era of guitars and amps has nonetheless built guitars since he was a child. Later, he apprenticed at Taylor Guitars in El Cajon for half a dozen years. “I worked for another local builder for a number of years, too, and I learned a lot of stuff from him. Scott Lentz. He’s a friend of Barney’s.”

Guitar circles being somewhat incestuous in this town, the Barney that Anderson is referring to is Barney Roach, who joined the Blitz Brothers when they re-banded earlier this year. When Roach needed a bass guitar bought off the rack set up properly and refinished he went to Anderson, whose reputation is spread locally by word of mouth only. You have to know someone, in other words. “I don’t advertise in any of the guitar magazines.”

Robert Shaw is himself a guitarist and a former museum curator. He is the author of two previous books on guitar and has published books about bird decoys and quilting. “With more highly skilled luthiers at work than ever before,” he writes in the preface to Electrified, “ours is a golden age of the electric guitar. Presenting superbly crafted electric guitars as fine art, this beautifully photographed book gives 125 master luthiers from 15 countries the spotlight — artisans who have custom-built instruments for the likes of Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Steve Miller, George Benson, and Stevie Ray Vaughan.”

Has Anderson built axes for any big names? “Not really. But there are a couple of locals who have my guitars,” he says, “Mike Wheeler and Dave Sorlien.” As to which of his instruments will be featured in the book, we’ll have to wait until it is released in November. “I don’t know which one Shaw’ll use,” says Anderson. “I sent him five pictures of my guitars.” Image

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

In-Gloria-s Basterds

Homeless activist decries activities of the homlesser
Next Article

In-Gloria-s Basterds

Homeless activist decries activities of the homlesser

“I’ve sold more guitars in New Jersey than I have in San Diego.” Ian Anderson, luthier, says this by phone from his shop in San Marcos more as an observation than a complaint. “Nobody locally really knows about me,” which he admits is his own fault.

In a good year, Anderson will handcraft 25 custom guitars and sell them to clients around the world. His axes are played in Turkey, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Sweden, and England. “When you build guitars that sell for 5000 dollars, you kind of eliminate most of the local market. It’s really just the high-end guitar aficionados that, you know, buy my guitars. Thanks to the internet, my market is global.”

During the same conversation, Anderson says he just got word that one of his guitars will be included in an artsy guitar book slated for November release. It’s called Electrified: The Art of the Contemporary Electric Guitar, by Robert Shaw (Sterling Signature ISBN-10:1402747748.) He thinks the book may help showcase his work to domestic audiences. “It’s a coffee-table book. It’ll be available in all the big stores. It’s kind of cool, you know. It legitimizes what I’m doing and kind of cements it into history, at least for the life of the book.”

Anderson’s designs all have serious amounts of classic electric guitar DNA in them. They look like the sort of six-stringed offspring one might expect would be the result of a Fender Telecaster-Gibson Les Paul marriage, warped ever-so-slightly in the way of those funky Mosrites from the era of surf rock. “People seem to always want that vintage style of guitar that was perfected in those years, from the ‘40s to the early ‘60s.” Of the stuff that Anderson’s designing and building now, he says it is a match for the player that wants vintage “but can’t afford a 300,000-dollar ’59 'burst, you know?”

Anderson, who is 40, and therefore was born outside the golden era of guitars and amps has nonetheless built guitars since he was a child. Later, he apprenticed at Taylor Guitars in El Cajon for half a dozen years. “I worked for another local builder for a number of years, too, and I learned a lot of stuff from him. Scott Lentz. He’s a friend of Barney’s.”

Guitar circles being somewhat incestuous in this town, the Barney that Anderson is referring to is Barney Roach, who joined the Blitz Brothers when they re-banded earlier this year. When Roach needed a bass guitar bought off the rack set up properly and refinished he went to Anderson, whose reputation is spread locally by word of mouth only. You have to know someone, in other words. “I don’t advertise in any of the guitar magazines.”

Robert Shaw is himself a guitarist and a former museum curator. He is the author of two previous books on guitar and has published books about bird decoys and quilting. “With more highly skilled luthiers at work than ever before,” he writes in the preface to Electrified, “ours is a golden age of the electric guitar. Presenting superbly crafted electric guitars as fine art, this beautifully photographed book gives 125 master luthiers from 15 countries the spotlight — artisans who have custom-built instruments for the likes of Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Steve Miller, George Benson, and Stevie Ray Vaughan.”

Has Anderson built axes for any big names? “Not really. But there are a couple of locals who have my guitars,” he says, “Mike Wheeler and Dave Sorlien.” As to which of his instruments will be featured in the book, we’ll have to wait until it is released in November. “I don’t know which one Shaw’ll use,” says Anderson. “I sent him five pictures of my guitars.” Image

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Www.iaguitars.com

Oct. 31, 2011

you need to do it like this: www.iaguitars.com

Oct. 31, 2011
Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close