The Castelluccia family has constructed Gypsy guitars for three generations, making them the oldest continually running Gypsy guitar manufacturer in France. The shop was founded by Jean-Baptiste Castelluccia, an Italian immigrant who was one of many of the skilled Italian luthiers to arrive in Paris during the early 20th Century. The shop is now lead by Jean-Baptiste's grandson, who is also named Jean-Baptiste, and continues to build the unique Gypsy models of his grandfather as well as more conventional Selmer copies. With nearly a century of collective experience, the Castelluccia shop continues to build some of the best sounding and most affordable Gypsy guitars made in France. As the market for Castelluccias built in the 50s and 60s has heated up over the years, it's wonderful to have the option of buying a brand new Castelluccia at almost half the cost of what the vintage ones goes for.
Jean-Baptiste cleverly named this flagship instrument the "Django Castel" model as a tribute Django's classic composition Django's Castle. As one of Castelluccia's premiere models, it features solid Indian rosewood back and sides (a feature normally only found on guitars in the $5K and above range), a spruce top, and a walnut neck. The dimensions are typically Selmer, with a 670mm scale length and an ever so slightly larger lower bout that measures 15 7/8" across. This instrument is fitted with a set of Schaller tuners and Castelluccia's own JC tailpiece.
Notable design features include gently rounded binding which adds additional comfort by not pressing into your body like more conventional binding does. Additionally, the bridge includes a replaceable ebony saddle, a feature rarely found on Selmer style bridges which are normally fashioned from one piece of solid wood. You can easily adjust the action the by simply swapping out the saddle piece for one of a different height.
If anyone knows what a Gypsy guitar should sound like, it's JB Castelluccia. Three generations of Gypsy guitar building experience goes into each guitar he makes. This guitar is a testament to that fact as the tone and projection of this instrument far exceed what one would expect in this price range. The tone is purely French, with a dry, clear, direct sound that allows your leads to sing and you chords to remain tight and compact. The high quality, all solid woods of this instrument produce an exceptionally active high end which adds definition and character to anything you play. The chiming highs are balanced with a robust and complex midrange that adds a syrupy, thick texture to the tone that is simultaneously mellifluous and barking. There's so much going on sonically with every note you play, making every moment playing this guitar a satisfying and exciting adventure!
This superb instrument is one of the rare opportunities to buy a French made, flagship model Gypsy guitar from a notable luthier for under $6K. This beautiful, yet very practical instrument is a dream come true for the hardworking player who needs an exceptional instrument at an affordable price. We can all thank Jean-Baptiste for making these fabulous guitars available at good prices!
|Model Number||Django Castel|
|Fret Neck||14 Fret|
|Nut Width||1 3/4"|
|Body Depth||3 13/16"|
|Back and Sides||Indian Rosewood (Solid)|
|Tuners||Schaller Three on a Plate|