This 2011 Deluxe Gitano by Stefan Hahl represents the ultimate in
contemporary Selmer guitar design. Most builders today obsessively try
to replicate the design and building techniques of "golden era" guitars
like the original Selmers, Busatos, and later Favinos. Hahl has dared
to be different by using the Selmer design, which he has studied
extensively, as a starting point for something new and unique. His
guitars characteristically combine the complexity, warmth, and
listenability of archtops and flatops with the punch and clarity of
Selmers. The real genius of his work is that he has succeeded in making
a contemporary, sophisticated sounding Gypsy guitar without loosing the
essence of the Selmer sound. Others have tried to make such a guitar,
but the end result is that warmth and complexity are traded for clarity
and punch, which results in a very muted and dull sounding guitar. Not
so with Hahl. His guitars produce notes with a rounded, satisfying tone
but are still springy enough to shoot out of the instrument in volume
Hahl's work has been well received by the very finest Gypsy guitarists today. Most notably, by Bireli Lagrene who owns three Hahl guitars and has used them on most of his recent recordings. check out: Move, Just the Way You Are, To Bi or Not to Bi, and Live in Paris.
Gypsy legends Dorado Schmitt and Hono Winterstein also play Hahl guitars.
This unusually beautiful example features stunning 40 year aged tiger maple back and sides, a 40 year aged European spruce top, and three piece maple neck with a mahogany spline. It is outfitted with a set of closed Schaller Deluxe tuners with ebony buttons and a DR tailpiece. The ebony bridge includes two removable bone saddle pieces which can be replaced to adjust the action. Two sets of saddle pieces are included with the guitar.
As with any Hahl, playability is closer to the super smooth feel of an archtop than the more cumbersome action you'd expect from a Selmer style guitar. At only 2.8mm action, this guitar will allow you to play things that can rarely be executed on a Gypsy guitar.
The sound of this guitar lives up to Hahl's reputation as a builder of "modern Gypsy guitars." The single notes are warm, thick, and rounded in character yet still have the fast attack and "pop" that Gypsy players need. Chords are rich, full, and complex; a rare trait for a Selmer style guitar, especially the oval hole models. Even the open "cowboy" chords like G, D, C, etc sound so full you'd swear it's a flatop. Yet, the guitar still has that springy punch for leads that Selmers are known for. This is a guitar that one minute can be used to play an archtop like chord melody arrangement of a standard and then the next minute be belting out Gypsy leads around the campfire. Hahl is the only luthier who balances these two characteristics so well and this guitar is one of the best in that dual role.
One aspect I find particularly intriguing about Hahl's guitars is that they have a somewhat "open" tone in that there is a touch of natural reverb to the sound. Many guitars have this, but usually it is too much and creates the overtone ringing and muddiness that is the sign of a poorly made guitar. But when you have just enough it adds a lot of complexity and interest to the tone. Hahl's guitars have this "open" character in just the right amount. If you are turned off by some of the more traditional, "dry" sounding guitars then you'll be pleasantly surprised by this guitar which is definitely something different.
This is the CASH price...add 3% if you'd like to pay with a credit card. 4% for International orders.
|Model Number||Deluxe Gitano|
|Fret Neck||14 Fret|
|Nut Width||1 3/4"|
|Back and Sides||Maple|
|Neck||Maple with Mahogany spline|
|Tuners||Schaller Classic Deluxe (Gold)|
|Case||Superior Deluxe Black|
The original "Wegen" Gypsy Guitar pick. 3.5mm thick, 30mm long, 26mm wide.
The original Gypsy jazz strings! Used by Django Reinhard and nearly every other Gypsy guitarist.
Vintage Django tone for Selmer/Maccaferri oval hole guitars.