The next BIG step…

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Over the past several weeks I have been preparing for a big opportunity in my career as a luthier and business owner. In a previous blog you’ll see that I had my first CNC experience as a woodworker. With the help of my good friend at Hermance Machine Company (www.hermance.com) I participated in a CNC demo with C.R. Onsrud (www.cronsrud.com) making a few of my resonator guitar bodies. The demo was well received enough that the company is taking me to Las Vegas with them for the 2013 Association of Woodworking and Furnishing Suppliers Fair (http://awfsfair.org)! There will be hundreds of thousands of people in attendance, lots of contacts, exposure, and opportunity. It’s kind of a big deal.

In preparation I purchased a variety of aged tone woods from Lewis Lumber Products (www.lewislp.com) and other various providers in my area. There will be 24 blanks consisting of curly maple, ash, alder, African and Honduran Mahogany, black walnut, and padauk. I have done a fully detailed CAD drawing of my guitar that will instruct the CNC routing machine on what to cut, and it will do it efficiently and accurately!

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While the machine demonstrates its cutting abilities, making a large batch of guitar bodies for me, I’ll be there to answer questions and demonstrate the lutherie process. I will also have one of my completed resonator guitars on display for me to play and for others to test drive. I’ll have various hard ware pieces as well as my new line of custom winds form Porter Pickups (www.porterpickups.com). With these pieces I’ll be able to do a “dry-fit” assembly and preview the further building process.

In the mean time I’ll be planning display materials, printing handouts about my business and music, and working away in the shop for the upcoming week. Then its time to fly to the deserts of the southwest. 

Is there anything that you fellow bloggers would like to see at a demo like this? I’m open for suggestions and experiences. Thanks for your support and I can’t wait to show you the guitars as they progress!

Don’t forget to follow my progress on Twitter and Instagram (@Guitarleys) and visit my http://www.facebook.com/guitarleys page and support me with a ‘like’ and a share!

 

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Custom guitar body with CNC machine!

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It has been way too long since my last post! However, my negligence has been due to a very happily busy repair shop and constant developments in my lutherie and musical business! Life has been good to this “lucky luthier” and “guitar man”! My latest adventure this week was big league for sure…

I recently participated in the 2013 machine Expo at Hermance Machine Company (www.hermance.com). What a cool look into the world of production level woodworking this was! Every year major companies set up product and demonstration booths throughout the facility and show off their tools and what they can do. I was selected to join forces with C.R. Onsrud (www.cronsrud.com) who specialize in high quality CNC (computer numerical control) machinery designed for the aerospace, woodworking, plastics, and composites industries.

With a CAD (computer-aided design) program, we created a three-dimensional geometry of my resonator guitar to guide a very large CNC machine being shown at the expo. This machine cut out one of my guitar bodies, beautifully, in a matter of minutes! As a small luthier with smaller machines and hand tools, this was impressive and inspired possibilities of larger production in the future. It would have taken me a few hours instead of a few minutes.

For the immediate future, this particular machine has provided two mostly cut resonator bodies to be the first of guitars that will be built in my shop in Williamsport, PA. This is very exciting and motivational as I become one step closer to completing my wood shop and beginning the next step in my adventures in lutherie and music. Check out my photo album on Facebook by clicking this link, and be sure to ‘like’ and follow my page- http://on.fb.me/13OPbTL

Memphis Memories

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It was an honor to represent the Billtown Blues Association (www.billtownblues.org) in Memphis, TN, at the 2013 International Blues Challenge! Thank you to my supporters for providing me with another great opportunity like this. This was my third time competing and I realized how different each Beale Street experience has been. My first time in Memphis (2008) I competed with Black n’ Blues (http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/blacknb), the second time (2009) with the Ann Kerstetter Band (http://www.annkerstetter.com) after having reconstructive surgery on a freshly reattached thumb. This last time (2013) I competed as a solo artist and Luthier! The one constant, when reflecting on my Memphis trips, is how great a time I’ve had and how much I’ve learned. The amount of talent in both the band and solo/duo divisions never ceases to amaze and humble me.

For many reasons this recent visit has been my favorite thus far! The IBCs inspired my first solo tour, which encompassed 7,000 miles of travel, performing in 15 different cities across the USA! I played just shy of 30 shows all in fantastic new venues while promoting my fresh solo album, “Karma” (http://bit.ly/KarmaCD). See tweets from my solo tour by searching for the hashtag #SWKarmaTour on Twitter (https://twitter.com/guitarleys). I was always nervous about playing solo shows, so to conquer my fears I took them head on in a big way! Not only did I promote and share my music on this tour, but I shared my profession in the art of lutherie! I was proud to perform my original songs on the guitars that I obsessively built myself. I also got to share this great experience with my love and best friend.

Memphis has really grown since the last time I visited! While the usual Beale Street barbecue and blues joints are amazing, it was nice to see many new and successful shops and restaurants on Main Street. I remember taking long runs in the afternoons on my last visit when it was all under renovation! Now Memphis’ downtown, just outside of the Beale St. section, has more of a local’s feel — it’s less touristy, very safe, and full of great places to shop and eat! The beautiful buildings, cobblestone walkways and the Trolley system are comforting and give the town a quaint feel. I really felt it was a city and area that I could move to! I could open a Luthier’s repair and wood shop, build and fix all the stringed instruments and amplifiers by day, then, after sunset, head down to Rum Boogie Cafe or King’s Palace and show them off! Sounds like the good life to me!

All in all my recent trip to the Memphis IBCs was stellar! It was my favorite visit yet! I plan to compete again in the Billtown Blues Auditions next year and will hopefully return to Beale in 2015. By then I should have at least another album or two and some cool new custom built guitars to show off. I think I’ll just keep competing in the IBCs as long as I am able and hopefully I’ll win it someday! It’s always worth a trip for all the great music, and it’s always an enriching learning experience. I feel I have many years left of paying my dues in the world of the blues, but will hopefully one day deserve recognition as a guitar player, singer, songwriter and a Luthier.

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Guitarley’s celebrates 2 Years of business!!!

Does everyone know what First Friday of April is!? Friday April 5th marks the 2 YEAR ANNIVERSARY of Guitarley’s!!! I can’t believe how time has passed and I want to celebrate with an open house! I’m still working out all the details for what all I’ll be doing, but please plan to stop by and let’s hope for a beautiful spring day!

I’m hoping to at least have the whole place all spruced up, put together a slide show of my southwest tour and/or shop photos, have custom guitars on display, and more! This is also a great opportunity to grab my new cd “Karma”, if you haven’t done so already!

Hope to see you for First Friday celebration, in downtown Williamsport! Thanks!

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Sean Farley Music

Please come see the website I’ll be focussing on mostly over the next few months! Check out soon-to-release album “Karma” and my upcoming tour! I’ll be playing in GA on my way to Memphis TN for the International Blues Challenge (January 30-February 2) and then to the beautiful South West to tour for a month! Thanks for the support and please check out my new website!

Check out my first music Video!

I’m in the process of recording my next album, which will be a self produced solo project! The songs are coming along nicely, and it’s a great new experience for me too. My good friend and musical colleague, Tyler Spooner ( https://www.facebook.com/tspoonmusic ) also happens to be savvy with a video camera and film editing program. We have collaborated on a music video! The plan is to start a regional production company for musicians in need of quality media for their portfolios, and even small businesses that need advertising media. It’s a valuable asset to have readily and affordably available. It’s also fun for me to find another musician who wants a similar career model as what I’ve been trying; luthier or videographer by day, and working musicians by night! It’s also the beginning of plans for a greater organization in our region to provide opportunities to musicians, artists, venues, and businesses. Please click on the youtube link, go to my Guitarley’s channel, and check out an all-local production of one of my original song “Sedona”. It was written about my times spent in beautiful Arizona, while attending The Roberto-Venn School of Luthiery ( http://www.roberto-venn.com ). I’m very pleased with how this song is represented by the video.

A victory for Guitarley’s

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I’m happy to announce that I recently won a regional Blues competition hosted by the Billtown Blues Association! This makes me a quarter finalist in the International Blues Competition (http://www.blues.org/ibc/#ref=ibc_index) to take place in January of 2013 on Beale Street, Memphis TN! I have done this competition twice before with two different bands and had a blast every time. Last time I played with a freshly re-attached left thumb, playing slide on my lap while in a fancy cast. I hope to make up for it this time around. The saying goes “third time’s a charm!” I’m hoping it applies this time. Not only do I hope to gain from this as a musician, but now as a luthier also. It will be an amazing networking platform for me to play my original music through guitars that I have built myself. I can’t wait to tell everyone about them! I have to remember to take a few business cards with me! I attached a link that will take you to the article about the event I participated in, the musician involved, and a little about myself too. Enjoy!

http://www.sungazette.com/page/content.detail/id/576235/BLUES-TIME.html?nav=5011