Description

"The goal of Retrograde Guitars is to bring boutique methods of building to a style of guitar that is historically factory made. The aesthetic is inspired by the department store laminate archtops of the 50s and 60s, but the build quality, playability, and attention to detail is that of a handmade stringed instrument." - Glenn Nichol 

The timelessly cool Cambridge model from Retrograde Guitars is the model that made us immediately want to work with Glenn Nichols and represent his brand. For a quick bit of backstory...Glenn was the finish department foreman at Santa Cruz guitars, was in charge of French Polish restorations for renowned classical guitar maker Kenny Hill, and is currently Bill Tippin's only employee. In other words, Glenn knows a thing or two about building exceptional instruments as evidenced by this gorgeous Cambridge (#13).

The Cambridge is a very lightweight, balanced instrument that feels and sounds like an old, perfectly seasoned guitar with a gorgeous acoustic voice. Seriously, you could play it happily for extended periods of time before ever thinking of plugging it in. This particular Cambridge, loaded with the ultra-cool looking (and sounding) Mojo Kleenex Box pickups, really nails the catalog-style guitar vibe that Glenn is going for, perhaps more than any other guitar he's delivered to date. 

Once plugged in, that same airy, open acoustic voice combines with the familiar chime and output of a these unique, P-90-esq pickups. Astute players will note that these are repros of a Kay pickup (technically, they were made by Gibson, P-35s) used by Barney Kessel. They have a great midrange-centric voice with a top end we found to be a little more pronounced than a typical P90. They still retain that beautiful, open chime that we all love in a great P90 however...these pickups just provide another flavor of that core tone. 

When folks come into our shop on a search for a new guitar, spec lists/requirements in hand, we try to circle them back to one fundamental question they need to answer for themselves - at the end of the day, do I want to play this instrument? Does it inspire you? To use familiar language, does it have a vibe...mojo? The answer in this case is, unquestionably, yes. That's really the whole point, right? Priced with hardshell case. 

 

Specs

    • Top - 6-ply laminate with Curly Maple
    • Bracing - Torrified Sitka Spruce
    • Back - 6-ply Maple laminate 
    • Sides - Solid Maple
    • Neck - Spanish Cedar
    • Fingerboard - Katolox
    • Overlay - Ebony
    • Backstrap - Ebony
    • Scale Length - 24.9"
    • Nut Width - 1 11/16"
    • Neck Joint - "Catalog Style" 3-bolt
    • Frets - Medium Jumbo .100x .050 
    • Binding - Single White ABS
    • Inlay - Pearl Retrograde logo 
    • Fingerboard - Large Black Pearl dots
    • Side dots - White
    • Pickups - Mojo Kleenex - Alnico 5 magnets, 43 gauge wire, 9k (neck) and 11k (bridge)
    • Volume, Volume x2, Tone x2, 3-way
    • Tuners - Gotoh Relic Kluson style 
    • Bridge - Handmade adjustable 
    • Tailpiece -Antiqued Fancy
    • Nut - Unbleached Bone
    • Strap Buttons - Ivoroid 
    • Hand rubbed antique varnish finish (body)
    • Ebonized Spanish Cedar finish (neck)
    • Custom Color -Light Violin Burst
    • SN: 13
    • Hardshell Humicase

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