The big review: Bourgeois Legacy Series 000 DB Signature Deluxe | Guitar.com
From humble beginnings in an individual workshop in 1977, Dana Bourgeois has earned – and, more importantly, maintained – a reputation as a maker of high-performance acoustic guitars based on iconic Martin designs, but with a deep approach to tuning. which came to define the Bourgeois sound. Now at the head of a team of 20 people creating 400 instruments a year, Bourgeois is an established name for acoustic connoisseurs looking for something truly special.
While Bourgeois offers guitars at different price points, this beautiful instrument, which purrs when we remove it from the cozy TKL case, is a 000 DB Signature Deluxe model with high-end specs chosen by Dana himself. Fans of bourgeois guitars may be familiar with the DB Signature line, but this instrument changes things up a notch – it’s the Deluxe model, after all!
The first thing we notice is that with the exception of the celluloid pickguard, a barely there ivory fingerboard coach line, and the subtle use of bone for fingerboard inlays, bridge pins and side position markers, everything on the body of this guitar is made from wood – there are no plastic fasteners or threads here. Instead, this instrument is tied with an outrageously figured Hawaiian koa that adds a deep shimmering to the edges of the body, fingerboard, and head. This is accompanied by a two-tone herringbone soundboard net, and it’s an elegantly judged and balanced combination, with one feature distracting the other.
Typical of Bourgeois’ signature vintage-meet-modern approach, this guitar features a roasted Adirondack spruce top that is fully hand-lined. It’s a particularly attractive slice of wood with nice winter growth lines and just a touch of bear claw around the edges. A light tapping behind the bridge reveals a lively sweet spot that is auspicious.
The back and sides are Madagascan rosewood, often referred to as “Mad Rose” by people who like to keep things short. This is a rare and desirable Dalbergia that should not be considered a substitute for Brazilian rosewood – we are way past that by now. Noteworthy is the elegant set used for the back of the guitar, which is heavily figured with a golden lightning bolt of sapwood and carefully cut in half and accented by Bourgeois’ signature inlaid back band. It is a very good look.
The 14-fret one-piece mahogany neck is slim with a hint of vintage V-carving and looks inviting from the shapely heel to the pointed volute. The tuning functions are performed by a set of gold Waverlys with wood amourette knobs (but of course) and the nut and saddle are superbly crafted and polished bone.
In another marriage of vintage and modern construction techniques, the guitar was created using animal protein glue and its glossy finish is Bourgeois’ ultra-thin cyanoacrylic formula, which replicates an instrument’s response after decades of play. The back of the neck has a satin sheen for fast, squeak-free operation.
Although the body size is the same as an OM, this instrument features a shorter scale length of 25 inches. Having experienced the magic of several vintages over the years, we would expect a slightly warmer and more complex voice, but with the characteristic whipped response of a smaller soundboard than a dreadnought or dreadnought. jumbo.
000 models have traditionally found favor as instruments to accompany vocals, and with that in mind we start with a light pick and some of the beloved open 9th chords of the tasteful songwriting community. The results are downright delicious. The guitar has a pleasantly immediate response and while on other instruments the combination of Adirondack on Mad Rose can often veer into the thornier transient, in which case we get a silky attack that blossoms into a long decay. smooth and very musical requiring just a touch of vibrato to bring out the harmonics. To be honest, it’s pretty dreamy.
Digging with the pick reveals both a lot of headroom and a surprisingly wide dynamic range. There is magic in the notes when pushed all the way – an almost perfect balance of focus and articulation with warmth and soul – and even the sweetest of sounds, rich and full of character.
Switching to Orkney tuning (CGDGCD) from a standing start can be a shock to any guitar, but the Bourgeois takes the downward turn in his stride. There might not be the tectonic bass response of a C-tuned jumbo, but what you get is much more usable. It’s an articulate and beautiful voice that immediately responds to a wide variety of hand positions and attacks. Very impressive.
Due to the rarity of the woods used in this instrument, the quality of the build and the corresponding price, the DB Signature Deluxe is unlikely to become a first choice acoustic for big touring. However, drawn to its captivating acoustic voice, we installed a pair of Gefell M300 spaced pickups to test its potential as a recording instrument. The results are superbly detailed and require no studio witchcraft for top-notch sound.
In this golden age of acoustic guitar making, there are several schools of sonic excellence, from the orchestral textures of the Bay Area to the wild steel of Northumbria, and the Martin sound is by no means the last word. in superlative acoustic performance. This instrument, however, is a delightful example of that vintage Nazarene voice. Perhaps the last indication of this instrument’s commitment is that by the time we lovingly pack it for its return to Coda Music, the strings are almost dead and we’ve written several new songs. It was a real pleasure.
- THE PRICE £ 7,999 (hard case included)
- THE DESCRIPTION 6-string acoustic guitar, made in the USA
- TO BUILD Solid Madagascan rosewood back and sides, roasted Adirondack solid spruce top, 14 fret mahogany neck with ebony fingerboard. Binding of the body, fingerboard and head in koa. Ebony bridge with bone saddle and bridge pins. Bone nuts.
- EQUIPMENT Waverly open back tuners in gold with wood amourette buttons
- ELECTRONIC Nothing
- LADDER LENGTH 25 “/ 635mm
- NECK WIDTH 44.7mm at nut, 56mm at 12th fret
- NECK DEPTH 22mm at first fret, 23.5mm at 9th fret
- STRING SPACING 38.9mm at nut, 59.7mm at bridge
- LEFT HAND POA
- WEIGHT 2.25 kg / 4.9 lbs
- TO END Aged Tone Super Thin High Gloss Cyanoacrylic (Body) Satin (Neck)
- CONTACT coda-music.com, bourgeoisguitars.com