DnA Ryer Guitars by David Ryer Interview
NAME: David Ryer (DnA Ryer Guitars, the DnA is for David and Ardell my wife)
LIVING IN : Madoc, Ontario Canada
TRAINING & BACKGROUND: I started repairing instruments and later took a guitar building course from Sergei de Jonge and then a 28 month apprenticeship with Sergei.
PLAYING: Classical, Steel string and electric guitars.
NAME OF YOUR HIGH SCHOOL BAND : Not in High school but I was the guitar player in a band called Blind Willy.
LUTHIER YOU ADMIRE THE MOST: That’s a tuff one, there are so many really good builders today. I don’t have just one. Some really good younger builders are coming up with some amazing stuff now. I do admire the older builders for they have set the foundation for all really. Structural Integrity is so important and I see that more among the older Master builders.
INSTRUMENT YOU DREAM TO HAVE ONE DAY: My own designed electric guitar. As much as I love playing the electric guitar, I have never designed and built one. One day I plan to do that.
LAST ALBUM YOU BOUGHT: Friday Night Live in San Francisco
LAST MUSIC SONG YOU PUT IN YOUR CAR: Zeppelin live at Madison Square 1973
LAST SHOW YOU WENT TO : Keith Urban concert.
MOST IMPRESSIVE INSTRUMENT YOU EVER HAD IN HAND: My own Brazilian and Sitka Steel String. My wife purchased some old Brazilian for my birthday from Sergei de Jonge and I managed to make a guitar for myself. I love this instrument in every way, playability, tone and esthetically. Its just an amazing guitar to play.
MOST STRANGE RESTORATION OR REPAIR YOU HAD TO DO : A crushed acoustic steel string. It got backed over by a small truck. It was in the case which was a good thing because the owner managed to collect all the splinters and pieces of wood which were in the case. I was handed a baggie full of wood pieces. In the end though, the repair turned out very good with a happy owner.
As mentioned previously Structural Integrity is very important to me,
I want that instrument to be around a lot longer than me. Playability and then Esthetically are the next two important things.
I’m more traditional with designing a guitar not to say I don’t like the newer designs I see because I do.
I am very influenced by Sergei de Jonge of course and his own designs.
My process starts by drawing it out including bracing. I want to see where my bracing pattern will line up with the waist area for example. That’s a bit of a weak area and I want that reinforced a bit. Even if only a brace end (or some other reinforcement) is tucked into the liner at that area. After the drawing is complete, I look at the shape appeal, the bracing structure etc.
I like to think that all my models are equally as good in their own ways. But if I were to pick one I would have to say my Classical.
I love building classical guitars.
Our philosophy is to build a guitar to exceed the customers expectations.
It’s a combination of the woods and the building technique that make up for a beautiful sounding instrument.
Communications with the client is essential.
Having those conversations develops a relationship between the builder and the client and creates a situation where the client will start to learn what questions to ask. Very important before the build starts.
Conversation is key to both the builder and the client, both learn from each other. I get to learn what the players expectation are and he gets to learn the process I will take to get there.
Sometimes there could be delays in ordering certain components depending what is required once the build starts.
But other then that the only other delay is the build list, currently my build list has one opening for 2023 so roughly out 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 years.
Chris Caddell: Colin James, Sas Jordan, Big Wreck. Peter Fredette: Kim Mitchell, Gowan
To name a few, we have an amazing Lutherie community, The group of Seven Luthiers for example (Linda Manzer, Sergei de Jonge, David Wren, Tony Duggan-Smith, George Gray, Grit Laskin and Jean Larrivée).
We also have some amazing builders like Joshia de Jonge, Michel Pellerin, Dion James, Zach Lefebvre and Mario Beaudregard who create some of their own unique methods and inventions.
Siccas Guitars, The Fellowship of Acoustic, Grand Salon Guitare are some who represent my instruments.
Most have been ordered directly from me.
This year I have participated at the Ottawa classical guitar show, Fretboard Summit in Chicago, Vancouver International Guitar festival and coming up The Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase.
We also invite you to follow him on his various social networks:
In the coming weeks, as for others luthiers for plucked string instruments, luthiers for bowed string instruments, amps & effects makers, wood & supplies dealers, lutherie events, jobs, schools & teachers subscribers on our site, you will be able to follow our series of mini-interviews dedicated to the fascinating world of luthiers.
See you soon…
If you are passionate about the world of luthiers, join us!