While I’ve been making guitars since the late 1990’s, it is more recently that I’ve been able to commit myself to guitar making fulltime. It has been a long journey to this point, as a musician, and with over two decades spent as a woodworker honing my skills in both custom furniture and cabinetry, to the point where I can today pursue my passion for building the very best guitars that I possibly can. As a guitar player of more than 40 years, I have a deep interest and respect for both sides of the sound spectrum – both electric and acoustic instruments. In my own playing life, there have been long stretches of time when I have been dedicated to one or the other form of the instrument, and convinced that at that given moment, that was where my interest truly lay. Inevitably the pendulum swings to the other side, and I find new and intriguing things about whichever guitar I had stopped playing years before. Suffice it to say that I doubt this dichotomy will ever be settled within me, for which I am grateful. This lets me pursue both styles of the instrument with equal passion.

Custom Guitars Chicago Luthiers (stringed instrument builders) come in many different forms. Some are skilled musicians, but many are not. Some pursue instrument building strictly from the standpoint of seeing it as perfecting their woodworking skill and like the challenge of designing and engineering new creations. Some expand their repertoire into all fields of lutherie – including lutes and ouds, mandolins, and violins, while some focus on just one form of the instrument, such as classical guitars. All are worthy forms of the discipline, and any builder could spend a lifetime pursuing just one of these. For me, my interest stems naturally from loving the sound of the guitar, and over time, trying to figure out how each component of the guitar added to the production of that sound. Oddly, or perhaps not, the more one engages with it, the more fascinating and complex the whole endeavor becomes. I hope that I am a worthy successor to all those who have come before me and can add something of my own sensibilities to the craft.

Custom Acoustic Guitar Shop This website is still being composed and revised. As time progresses, the site will be expanding, and more, and more thorough, information will be posted with more photos and some writing about all things ‘guitar’, and maybe posts on woodworking in general as well (see a link to the R Watts Guitars blog). I appreciate your interest, and in the meantime, feel free to email me through the contact info for any information about pricing and building a custom guitar.

Richard Watts