Larry Nair seeks out and learns things that interest him, usually creating his own path to success.   After picking up his older brothers cheap guitar at 15 years old, he became fascinated with making his own music, and spent many hours picking alone on the front porch of the family home on a small military base in Colorado.  His obsession and a thirst for a better instrument led him to take a brutally exhausting summer job loading hay bales on local ranches, but he was overjoyed when he was able to buy a Hohner dreadnaught that was easy to play and sounded good.   He was soon playing in a small garage band, and even sitting in as a sideman at local nightclub mostly playing blues and country.   An early marriage and the pressures of raising a child and feeding a family found his guitars languishing in the closet, but he found time to play them a few times a month... his obsession dormant but still alive.   When his son left home for the army, leaving him with time on his hands and a lot to think about, he turned the excess emotional energy loose on his guitar, often spending 3 hours a night playing and improving his technique.   Soon he'd regained most of the lost ground, and at the age of 38 he learned to sing, began playing gigs, started a band and recorded a couple of CD's before turning 40.

 

Still obsessed with the guitar and thirsty for a better instrument, he bought a do it yourself kit on-line, and then another.  Next came the idea of making guitars from scratch, which led to investment in tools and wood, and countless hours poring over guitar making books and on-line tutorials.  To date he's spent an estimated 2,000 hours reading and studying guitar making and repair,  and about 3,200 hours building guitars.   Another 3,800 hours or so have been spent repairing guitars by other makers.  His obsession drove him to burning the midnight oil on guitar building for about ten years even while holding down a full time job.  Even though he is self taught, and has never had any formal training in luthiery,  he admits to owing much to the writers of great books on guitar making and repair... Natelson and Cumpiano, Jonathan Kinkead,  Dan Erlewine as well as many internet forum contributors like Mario Proulx, Alan Carruth, and John Arnold.  All of these and many others have generously shared their hard earned knowledge, either for free or at a pittance.   Because of this generous spirit of sharing, a person with tenacity and cleverness can learn the basics if willing to invest the time, and to fearlessly make guitars. 

 

His approach to instrument making is decidedly no-nonsense and "blue collar".   Having spent so many hours of his first career with a shovel or hammer in his hands, he has come to have strong feelings for the carpenter who just wants a really good guitar, or the waitress who is trying to become a country singer and needs a quality instrument.   These people can't usually afford an eight thousand dollar instrument, but there's no reason they shouldn't have a really fine one at an affordable price.    To that end he builds aesthetically simple guitars that are modeled after the great designs of the last century by the big factories, but these are "souped up" guitars with tuned tops and bracing design optimized for the best tone in each design.   He also uses the nicest materials he can find, preferring attractive wood to a lot of blingy inlay or overwrought headstocks and bridges.  The result is a collection of fine guitars with classic understated grace, and tone that any player would love to have.

Tahoe Guitars

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