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.
The Tears model is Castellucia's premiere Selmer copy. It features a high grade European spruce top, exquisite birdseye maple back and sides, and a walnut neck with a Selmer style grafted headstock. This instrument is fitted with a set of Schaller tuners and Castelluccia's own JC tailpiece. The high grade woods and hardware found on this instrument are rarely found on French made guitars under $3K, making this instrument an exceptional deal for someone looking for luxurious features at a budget price.
Notable design features include gently rounded binding which adds additional comfort by not pressing into your body like more conventional binding does. Additionaly, 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.
The sound of this instrument is quite remarkable, especially considering the price! Castelluccia's deep experience in building Gypsy guitars is most evident in the strong voiced, traditional tone that his guitars produce. This instrument has the very dry, clear, chimey tone that is so reminiscent of the best instruments of the "Golden Age" of French luthiery. Unlike many other contemporary builders, Castelluccia cuts to the chase by giving you the classic, crisp, Gypsy tone without any unnecessary sonic fluff. Lead lines project nicely with plenty of bite and a nice bit of attitude. Chords are crunchy and powerful, just the way the Gypsies like it!
This superb instrument is one of the rare opportunities to buy a French made Gypsy guitar from a notable luthier for under $3K. 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!
|Fret Neck||14 Fret|
|Nut Width||1 3/4"|
|Body Depth||3 13/16"|
|Back and Sides||Birsdeye Maple|
|Tuners||Schaller Three on a Plate|
Just received my long awaited Castellucia Tears. It is everything that Michael said it would be and more. The workmanship is impeccable. The birdseye maple body is just stunning. The set up is perfect, and the voice is unbelievable. I'm reading a great novel (Ironfire by David Ball) about the medieval siege of Malta and the use by the Ottomans of a super cannon called a Bombard. Well, this guitar is a musical Bombard. Not that it can't play soft and sweet also, but as Michael said, "it likes to be played hard". I will never fully exploit the potential of this guitar but I will relish every minute with it. Thank you Michael for making this available to me and boxing it up so securely for it's trip down to Oregon.
Submitted by: David on 12/27/2016 07:32:04 PM