Monday, July 30, 2007

Ronald Ho Guitars

The story goes that Ronald Ho was a University professor who took a long sabbatical many years ago. He moved to Port Townsend, WA, and became a luthier. He made some amazing guitars.

I first found out about Ronald Ho guitars from one of our musicians, Erik Christensen. Erik has a fabulous Ronald Ho guitar, you can see it in his pictures and videos here.

Erik asked me to research Ronald Ho guitars for him. I found just a few things. These pictures are of a Ronald Ho 12-string guitar for sale at Eric Schoenberg's guitars. Here's what he has to say:

1983 Ronald Ho HSJ-12 Cutaway, big, beautiful maple 12-string made by a highly respected luthier from Port Townsend, WA. Ron hasn't been building for many years; I met him in the mid-Eighties at the Puget Sound Guitar Workshop, at which time he was producing very high quality guitars. Hot jazz fingerstylist, Jamie Findlay, has owned several of Ron's guitars, this 12-string having been one. The body is a 17" Jumbo shape with a sort-of Maccaferri-style cutaway, a pin bridge and excellently executed maple bindings and maple/ebony purfling lines all around the instrument. There are two small holes from pick-up knobs on the side next to the heel and a small amount of playing wear, the maple is stunning, the action is very low (super-important for a 12-string!) and the sound is big, clear and powerful. • Cash Price, $2395

Erik Christensen's guitar looks identical to this one, except it's a 6-string. If you haven't heard it yet, I highly recommend you check out the video I linked to above, or come to see Erik when he plays here.

I found only 2 other mentions of Ronald Ho guitars, Jamie Findlay, the noted Jazz guitarist, owned one when he gave an interview, and mentioned it as a favorite. This might be the 12-string Eric Schoenberg is selling.

The other mention is by Giuseppe Continenza, the founder of the European Musician's Institute, apparently in Italy. I've linked to the interview where he talks about his guitars.

I'm sure there's more information out there about Ronald Ho guitars. Hopefully someone interested will see and respond to this post. Ronald Ho truly made wonderful guitars, and I'd like to know more about them.

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Anonymous said...

I have a Ron Ho, it was supposed to have been own by Larry Coryell. It is a 12 string with an unbelievable sound. However the neck twisted and the cost of fixing it is more than it's worth. Such is life.

Anonymous said...

I have 2 Ronald Ho guitars that I would like to sell.
One is a 6 string and the other a 12 string.

Any idea what their value might be on the market today?

Anonymous said...

I also have a Ronald Ho 6-string Guitar (no cutaway). Late 70's to early 80' as I recall. The No. inside says 981-103-SD I think, but the ink has been blurred with a drop of water. 3-piece back with light wood. It was dropped and has a crack in the top. Anyone know where Ho is? No idea of it's value. Thanks for the space to post.

Anonymous said...

I'm Interested
If anyone has a Ronald Ho Guitar they would like to sell?? Please email Robert @
Thanks Robert

Anonymous said...

I'm looking for a Ronald Ho Guitar. If anyone has one they would like to sell email me thanks

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