Smith and Young Model 1 Spider Cone Square Neck - Guitars for a new beginning
There is an art to reproducing guitars from a by-gone era in today's day and age. The folks at National have certainly proven they can not only faithfully recreate historic models, but also update them tastefully with modern day technology & materials that offer improvements. Today's National ResoPhonic is a constantly evolving company, which is always trying new ideas, reissuing classic models, and pushing the envelope as far as tone is concerned.
For many years, National ResoPhonic has been in research and development of the original Dobro's, as those models were part of the fabric and historic beginning of the original National company founded in 1927. This is the instrument that spawned an entire industry, a sound, and inspired a tone like nothing else. The Dobro company was founded in 1929 by brothers John Dopyera, Rudy Dopyera, Ed Dopyera, and Vic Smith. The name "Dobro" represents an early acronym for the Dopyera Brothers, thus: Dobro.
Dobro was never intended to mean a specific instrument, like a banjo, or mandolin, however, over the years, the name Dobro became synonymous with any squareneck spider-bridge resonator guitar, held in the lap, and played with a bar in open tunings, rather than fretting the strings on a fretted fingerboard.
Over the years the company changed ownership many times, and was shuttered from 1942 to 1954, bought by Semi Mosely, then lost, and finally bought by Gibson. Fast forward to today's modern era National ResoPhonic instruments, located in San Luis Obispo, where founder Don Young started his company in 1989. Having worked for the Dopyera brothers several times during his career, Don is uniquely qualified to recreate these iconic guitars. We are proud to introduce the newest line of instruments from the Smith and Young Spider Cone division of National, the Smith and Young Model 1 Spider Cone Square Neck!
These instruments incorporate a host of new innovations from our friends at Smith and Young, which make these wholly different from their roundneck cousins. The string break angle at the bridge has been increased to have a steeper incline, which increases downward pressure on the spider cone, transferring more energy to the cone. The result?... Enhanced volume sought after by steel players [read as "LOUD"]!!
The same design has been utilized at the nut, which once again makes the string break angle more severe thereby increasing volume and sustain. Make no mistake, these instruments have an enormous volume in reserve, yet still maintain a sweet singing tone!
The Model I features a light gauge steel body with a vintage nickel "rubbed" finish that only adds to the guitar's traditional mojo and vibe, while the Model II which is maple, is finished in a vintage dark Sunburst that harkens back to the "catalog" guitars from the 40's!
Instrument recording courtesy of Johnny Bellar. Johnny's website: http://www.johnnybellar.com