Hand made bluegrass mandolins from £2500
Rolfe Gerhardt is a legend in mandolin making, from the early days of Unicorn mandolins to the Phoenix's of today he has spent thirty years dedicated to making the finest mandolins. A man after my own heart he believes that the scroll of the F5 is an expensive strap hanger, certainly not necessary to get the bluegrass sound.
Using a fixed graphite truss rod, these are some of the lightest mandolins around, and light weight leads to increased resonance and tone when it's done properly. Rolfe gets that ellusive depth and breadth of tone from f hole mandolins that few can achieve. The neo-classical mandolins are even lighter, built for light strings they lack nothing in volume and have an incredible warmth and richness of tone. I am delighted to be the only European stockist of these fantastic mandolins.
Phoenix Bluegrass£3,595.00In stockRolf says about his Bluegrass model;
Designed for the special bluegrass sound with medium-heavy to heavy strings. Professionals describe this model as having a "cutting chop and superb bass," "great playability," "doesn't seem stiff or hard to play," "perfect balance between strings," and they remark on the added volume and clarity on the E-string, especially in the studio for recordings. Some players use the increased playability to make chop chords on the 12th-14th frets.
If you a looking for a powerful bluegrass mandolin look no further but don't discount it for other styles, this is a very versatile mandolin, light and responsive to all playing styles.
Phoenix Standard SOLDSoldThe standard from Rolfe has a mere strap button to hang it over your shoulder but it makes up for the strap hanger complex with amazing responsiveness. As is the Phoenix trademark it seems to get to the note before you do. Not quite as light as the neoclassical but still lighter than most giving it amazing resonance and projection. People often ask my about playability, I usually respond that it is different for different people, for me this is it, light and open. It has a very punchy sound with well defined bass, strong mids and very precise and clean trebles. I almost forgot to mention how great it looks, Rolfe told me this one has extra specially flamey maple, the photo doesn't do it justice but take a look anyways. With hardshell case.
Phoenix Neoclassical SOLDSoldIn spruce and beautifully flamed maple back and sides with Rolfe's unique over 250 year old reclaimed wood bridge base the Neoclassical is voiced by Rolfe for playing with light to medium strings. This is a very light mandolin, but in sound only. Plenty of volume (nearly as much as the neo-bluegrass) but a different tone, it is very responsive with a complex but well defined sound, very dark and rich in the lower registers with sweet mids and clear strong trebles. With Rolfe's immaculate finishing, an understated black headstock and fittings and abalone Phoenix, to coin my favourite cliche, it looks as good as it sounds. With hardshell case.