Randy Lucas | 1999 | Kenny Smith Model
Randy Lucas builds some of the finest prewar inspired flattop guitars out of Hope, Indiana. After impressing vintage guru George Gruhn with only his 6th guitar, Randy has gone on to refine and improve his design and techniques.
In an earlier interview, Randy stated “I have a deep love for the sound of vintage Martin guitars from 1928 to 1945; that was the sound I was going for and that was the design I chose to start with, That was my textbook.” Indeed, his explosive, immensely rich dreadnought guitars have gained widespread acceptance amongst the bluegrass community.
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This guitar is named after Kenny Smith of the Lonesome River Band and is one of the 21 built in the series. Speaking of the KS model, Kenny himself said “Acoustic guitar is a monster as far as getting the sound and volume out of it, but this Lucas guitar is something else. It’s the best old-sounding new guitar I’ve heard.”
The guitar is a reproduction of Kenny’s 1935 Martin D18 to the extent of using an original C.F. Martin steel T-bar instead of an adjustable truss rod for neck support. Additionally, Randy even air-brushed the modern ivoroid tuner buttons and custom-ordered tortoise binding blanks to match original binding pattern on Kenny’s guitar.
The one departure is the lack of scalloped braces. This was specifically done to produce a balanced voice, reducing bass wolf notes and overtones during recording or performing with microphones.
This particular guitar is a 1999 model serial number 043. It was built 08-24-99 and is signed by both Randy Lucas and Kenny Smith. It is in excellent condition with only minor playwear on the guard and is accompanied by a letter from Kenny Smith himself (who owned this guitar)-dated May 10th 2000.
I describe this guitar has having perfect pitched overtones over balanced and explosive fundamentals. With the wider nutwidth, it is perfect for both flat as well as fingerpicking.
Top:Adirondack Spruce Top
Bracing: Non-scalloped Adirondack bracing one inch from the sound-hole
Construction: Hide glue
Back and sides: Mahogany
Fingerboard: Ebony with Lucas Logo
Nut width: 1.75″
Twelfth fret width: 2.25″
Scale Length: 25.5″
Neck: Vintage shaped Mahogany
Truss rod: Non-adjustable Vintage T-Bar
Bridge: Brazilian Rosewood with long saddle
Headstock: Brazilian rosewood overlay Abalone Torch inlay
Tuners: Waverly Vintage with Ivoroid buttons
Fixtures: Fossil Ivory nut, saddle and bridge pins with Abalone inlaid dots
Randy Lucas Guitars http://lucasguitars.com/
David McCarthy- AG gearbox
David McCarthy- Bluegrass Unlimited
©2008 Terence Tan.