This month all of the feedback I received from our old time customers has had an underlying whisper to me.
Customers report decades of good performance and satisfactions, or they report consistent performance and reliability, and that is what we have worked for in all these years. We always worked hard to give our customers something better.
But there is something more than that: it reveals a relationship between the player and tools of his musical expression. A strong relationship that eases and supports the process creating music. And that’s what a musical instrument should be. This is the basic difference between a musical instrument and a piece of furniture.
A stable neck is not something that sells more guitars because it is not immediately apparent. You realize it just when you benefit from it. So is not something that actually can be listed in the “feature list” of an instruments. We always work harder on the essential components of the instrument that cannot be listed in a feature list. I hate features lists. They do not reveal anything essential about how the instruments feels in your hands or how it responds. They tell you only what you can already see: two humbuckers , vibrato bridge…
So after years (and still today) of people asking “why don’t you use ebony fretboards like all of the GOOD guitars out there?” here are the comments of my long time players with the reply.
On my side, my opinion is: I save ebony for future classic luthiers that badly will need it.
So what are the values people look for in a guitar? Luckily there are as many as many as the players who play them. But I have seen too often what big industry and marketing people offer as “value”. Usually it is something superfluous added on to a very poor instruments. Branded pickups, quilted tops, special hardware finishes, abalone bindings, and the cool/hot woods or a momentary fashionable feature.
At Manne, we have always tried being less baroque, being sure that values are built-in all of our instruments. Values that are often not visible but more essential. So we agree with Saint Exupery’s little prince…
Reports in the following testimonials from our players speak of special Manne features like the laminated neck core, thin fast resin fretboard, custom neck joint components and asymmetrical neck shape and the general strong durable construction and excellent playability of our instruments. These are not just “marketing features” but something we have work out over many years of experience, on our own, by solving a problem or finding a new way to give the player consistent performance…
I’m not surprised by (as that has been our goal achieved through work and experience) but very happy to receive so may positive comments from our players. So this is our mission: Make people happy when playing our instruments.
From your letters, I know we have done a good job, and we are on a good track. Always open to make our instruments better.