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Andreas Cuntz - Master Luthier
In 1994, Andreas Cuntz began his Master Luthier scholarship at the German top-class bass guitar company “Schack-Guitars”. At the same time, he studied violin and string instrument design and construction at the State University in Mittenwald in Germany.
Andreas really had an aptitude for his chosen career - as early as 1995, he had already designed the construction of the steel-stringed CWG 23 model, which features a straight string line between saddle and tuning keys, creating improved tuning stability and enhanced string oscillation. In that same year, he had already built the first prototypes.
In 1996, the German Chamber of Handicrafts awarded him the nationwide first prize for his CWG 23 guitar.
He then gained even more experience in the European “Gibson Customizing Shop” – in those days, he was hardly ever in his own workshop!
In 1997, Andreas finally returned to his familiar surroundings and began creating guitars there. He has meanwhile gained a reputation which is second-to-none and he has well-known guitarists from all over Europe on his customer list. In addition to carrying out repairs and restoration, and completing custom orders for electric guitars and basses, he also found the time to advance the design of his CWG 23, successfully creating a more comfortable and modern body with the widest possible range of sound characteristics. The CWG 23 is now an instrument that remains exclusively handmade, albeit with a modern design, perfect playability and scintillating sounds.
As part of his German Master Luthier final examinations in February 1999, he built his first 12-string CWG 23 model (Rio Palisander-certified, nitrocellulose lacquer). This instrument proved Andreas’ theory that it was possible to build a 12-string with a straight string line to the tuners.
1999 was also the year in which he began working on his first Weissenborn models. These strongly resemble the 1920’s originals and are made from very rare Koa wood, or, upon request, from traditional woods. In that same year he built the first CWG 23 Acoustic Bass Models (CAB 23), nowadays available as Custom-Order.
Since 2002, all Cuntz CWG 23 models have been supplied with Hiscox cases.
2005 saw the birth of the new headstock logo and the 10th anniversary of the company and the CWG 23 guitar. This was also the year in which the first Internet website was born - and now, in February 2010, this revamped site and our online cooperation with Thust-Online is the outcome.
Recalling the years gone by, Andreas says, “2006 was the year when we decided to exhibit at the Frankfurt Music Fair – and it turned out to be a roaring success for us... not least because on the very first day of the exhibition, we met Martin Harley, who has since become a good friend of ours. The foundation for our European distribution cooperation with the Canadian pickup manufacturer Les Schatten also took shape at the Music Fair – we called this business venture “Schatten Design Europe”. 2006 also saw the start of our cooperation with SESSION Acoustic and Franz Schobert in Walldorf, for whom we now carry out all acoustic guitar repairs.” (in 2006 Andreas was in his repair shop 24/7, until he finally found the right employees to share the repairs load!).
“Meeting Martin Harley proved to be the catalyst for organising a concert in Gross-Rohrheim (the location where Cuntz Guitars started up) in 2007 - the event was to celebrate the workshop‘s 10th anniversary and was to be held on the Sunday after the Frankfurt Music Fair. Flanked by “Musikkiste e.V.”, the acoustic guitar event GITARRENZAUBER (Guitar Magic) was born that year – and it attracted 200 enthusiasts! In 2009, more than 600 fans of acoustic wizardry came to hear the artists!” To be continued !!!
“Another acoustic guitar artist was instrumental in the success of ‘GITARRENZAUBER’ - he came several times to our Music Fair booth in 2007, trying our guitars and amazing the bystanders with his technique – and then he finally came out with this never-to-be-forgotten gem: “Hey Andreas, now I understand something - women and guitars have one thing in common - for the best you have to pay...!” Since then, PETTERI SARIOLA, at that time 23 years old, has become a staunch member of the Cuntz guitar family and a star performer at GITARRENZAUBER. Petteri also adds his inimitable sparkle and charisma to our Internet site - and the global web (but he’d probably formulate his statement a little differently today... :-]).
In 2008, I created the “MARIE” model, which is still a strictly limited-production instrument. 2008 also saw the conversion and expansion of a new workshop on today's site - and an incredible degree of motivation generated by creating and fine-tuning instruments for most famous german artists like Stephan Zobeley (Herbert Grönemeyer Band), Alex Auer (Xavier Naidoo Band), Laith AlDeen and all the rest of our satisfied customers...
Since 2009, we have been supplying all our instruments with a HISCOX shaped case, which is embossed with the Cuntz logo - and the very first ELECTRIC “Weissenborn” is on the Naidoo tour with Alex Auer – almost coinciding with our friend Martin Harley’s fabulous tour with James Morrison.
In November 2009, we started revamping both our logo and the printed material for the 4th GITARRENZAUBER event, aided and abetted by the graphic designer Reinhard Helfert.
2010 has started off with a bang – first off, there’s the organisation of the exclusive pre-release of MARTIN HARLEY’s 4th album for GITARRENZAUBER; then we’re following PETTERI SARIOLA in Los Angeles live online, we have a previously undreamt-of cooperation with AER, Farmsound and the SESSION Music Group.... AND we’re creating new models for the Frankfurt Music Fair, plus new pages full of info for this site! (Wow, stress pure, says Andreas happily, furiously dabbing at his brow with a Kleenex...:-})