This fantastic instrument was built sometime in the 1970s by Jacques Castelluccia. Castelluccia was one of the many famous Italian luthiers to make his name in France (along with Busato, DiMauro, Favino, Anastasio, Maccaferri, etc.) Castelluccia is the oldest continuously running shop in Paris, still producing guitars under the direction of Jacques Castelluccia's son, Jean-Baptiste.
While the price of guitars made by Busato (along with other Italian makers such as Favino and Maccaferri) have skyrocketed in recent years, Castelluccia's have been largely overlooked. But after playing this guitar, I think anyone would agree that Castelluccia was also capable of building guitars on par with his more famous contemporaries.
This instrument features Selmer like dimensions: 670mm scale, a 15 9/16" wide body, and 3 7/8" body depth. Castelluccia's ultra lightweight three brace design weighs in at only 3.6 lbs, among the lightest guitars I've ever had in the shop. The back and sides are Indian rosewood, the top is spruce, and the neck is mahogany. The JC tailpiece and tuners are original. The tailpiece has a rosewood insert and a piece of black leather underneath. This is one of the fancier versions of this model, featuring attractive ivoroid binding.
All the examples of this model I've had in the past were from the 1950s or 60s. This rare 1970s model is distinguished by its higher quality materials, excellent condition, and numbered label. Judging from this instrument, by the 70s Castelluccia had refined this model to near perfection. It posses a level of workmanship and materials unsurpassed by earlier examples of their work.
The condition of this instrument is breathtaking! It is easily the best persevered Castelluccia I've ever come across. There are no serious cracks or major modifications. There is some small top separation down the middle of the top, but this appears to be a center seam and not a crack. As you'd expect, there are some dings and chips on the top and body, but far less than you normally see for a guitar of this age. The frets are new and the action is set at an easy playing 2.7mm.
The sound of this fine instrument ranks among the best vintage Gypsy guitars available. Volume-wise it's off the charts! A real boomer that will knock each note to the back of the hall. Tonally it has a nice balance between the trebles and mids, allowing for both some high end sizzle and a tad of midrange nasalness. The bass is really impressive, not overbearing but very robust and "hollow" which is just how I like it. Most importantly, it has the mature character that only finely aged woods can produce. The distinct clarity and unique overtone series of this guitar is something that only comes with time. The best contemporary luthiers working with the finest materials would still be hard pressed to build and instrument that sounds like this!
This model was made famous by Dorado Schmitt who played a similar Castelluccia in the Bireli Lagrene's Live Jazz a Vienne DVD.
This is the CASH price...add 3% if you'd like to pay with a credit card. 4% for International orders.
|Model Number||D Hole|
|Sound Hole||D Hole|
|Fret Neck||14 Fret|
|Nut Width||1 13/16"|
|Body Depth||3 7/8"|
|Back and Sides||Indian Rosewood|
|Tailpiece||JC Nickel with Insert and MOT|
|Tuners||Three on a plate|