resonator guitars

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Michael Terris makes fine banjos, mandolins and resonator guitars by hand in New Jersey. Active since the 1980s.


The Tennessee brand was founded in the early 1970s by Tut Taylor & his son Mark. On moving to Nashville from Georgia, Tut bought the former Billy Grammer guitar factory and started manufacturing the “Tennessee” line of mandolins, resophonic guitars, banjos, and acoustic guitars. This company continued for several years. In 1977 Tut decided to move to Pigeon Forge, TN where he started a small retail shop. Mark continued to build instruments under the "Crafters of Tennessee" name.

Tut Taylor

Tut Taylor branded resophonic guitars were made by Crafters of Tennessee. Crafters of Tennessee was established in 1977 by Mark Taylor (Tut's son) and was active until around 2012. In the early 1970s Tut Taylor bought the former Billy Grammer guitar factory and started manufacturing the “Tennessee” line of stringed musical instruments with Mark.


Sho-Bud was founded as a pedal steel guitar company in 1955 by steel players Shot Jackson and Buddy Emmons. In 1963 Shot Jackson’s sons, David and Harry,  joined the company. In 1963 Buddy Emmons left Sho-Bud to start the Emmons Guitar Company with Ron Lashley. By the 1970s Sho-Bud also were also making acoustic and resonator guitars under the Sho-Bro brand.  The Jacksons sold the company to Gretsch-Baldwin in 1979.

S.S. Maxwell

The S.S. Maxwell brand was owned by the Targ & Dinner Music Company of Chicago and lasted from the early 1930s to the late 1940s. S.S. Maxwell instruments were made by Regal and Harmony - who built standard flat-top acoustics & ukuleles, but Kay also made S.S. Maxwell acoustic guitars with f-holes and resonator guitars.

Source: Guitar Stories: The Histories of Cool Guitars. Michael Wright. Hal Leonard Corporation, 1 Jan 2000


Kurt Schoen has been making guitars since 2003. Originally based in Louisville, Kentucy he moved to Hood River, Oregon in 2006 and then Walla Walla, Washington in 2007. He specialises in custom rustic looking instruments including electric guitars, cigarbox guitars and resonator guitars.

Source: Schoen Guitars website (10 August 2020)


Michael Sanden started to learn guitar building in 1982 in San Diego with Bozo Padunavac where he learned to make acoustic guitars and mandolins. From 1984-1986 he studied classical guitar making with Georg Bolin. He recieved his journeyman`s certificate in 1986 and in 1996 his Master´s certificate in guitar craftmanship. He has taught guitar building classes for since the 1990s over 25 years and also worked as design and construction consultant for Tanglewood.

Source: Sanden Guitars website (6 July 2020)


S101 Guitars is a brand name of the America Sejung company. Sejung is a Korean-based textile, construction and information technology business founded in 1974. Qingdao Sejung Musical Instrument Co., Ltd. was established China in 2001 to produce affordable pianos and guitars. Company chairman, Soon Ho Park invested $20 million to build a new piano and guitar factory in Qingdao, staffed by experienced Korean managers, to supply product to local and worldwide markets. Their George Steck, Hobart M. Cable and Falcone piano brands offer a wide range of styles and finishes in both grands and uprights. Their guitar brands are S101 and Canvas.  Qingdao Sejung Musical Instrument Co. are also OEM producers of instruments for other big name brands.

Source: S101 Guitars website (15 May 2020)


Rozawood is the brand name of Roman Zajíček a luthier based in Kolín in the Czech Republic. Roman trained as an engineer and built his first instrument in 1979 while Czechoslovakia was still under communist rule. At this time there was no opportunity to learn luthiery locally but his his uncle living in the U.S.A., sent him some publications on guitar making. With every guitar he built, his reputation as a guitar maker began to spread but it was only a hobby for him for a long time. In 1989, after the Velvet Revolution, Roman started to build guitars officially, but it was still only a side job. In 2003 his output had increased to such a level that he formed a partnership with Pavel which financed the growing production and started to manage the business side of the company. Roman was finally able to make guitars as the full-time job and the new Rozawood workshop was established.


Rono Strings is the brand name of Ron Oates of Boulder, Colorado. He handcrafts stringed instruments on a custom or semi-custom basis. Ron Oates makes acoustic & resonator guitars as well as basses but is best known for his mandolins including electric mandolins. Ron built his first instrument (a classical guitar) as a high school woodshop project in 1967 and he never stopped. Many years of building, repairing and restoring stringed instruments of all types has given Ron some good insight into what people want to play.

Source: Rono Strings website (Archived 2006)


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