John Cruz Custom Guitars

About

Legendary luthier John Cruz has spent a lifetime handcrafting musical instruments for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees, open-mic-night heroes and everyone in between. After several decades building at one of the world's most respected custom shops, he forged his own path to rural Tennessee and is finally able to build guitars 100 percent his way.

John Cruz

“Simplicity and beauty mean a lot to me when it comes to building electric guitars. Vintage guitars are great, but require subtle — and sometimes, not so subtle — upgrades and modifications to further inspire players to create the music they were born to make. These guitars mean so much to me as they've been decades in the making. I'm certain you'll see, hear and feel the love I put into these guitars when you play one.”

John Cruz

John Cruz has been handcrafting guitars for nearly 40 years and is synonymous with “Master Builder”. Having built for many of the world's greatest guitarists, he is most closely associated with recreating Stevie Ray Vaughan's famous “Number One”, Jeff Beck's Yardbirds guitar, Yngwie Malmsteen's “Duck” and John Mayer's “Black1”. However, as a lifelong fan of Thin Lizzy, Cruz's personal favorite was replicating Gary Moore's Fiesta Red guitar.

In addition to these iconic instruments, Cruz has built for Doug Aldrich of Dio and Whitesnake, Dave Amato and Bruce Hall of REO Speedwagon, Jeff Beck, Mick Mars of Mötley Crüe, John Mayer, Duff McKagan and Slash of Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver, Richie Sambora of Bon Jovi, Carlos Santana, Ike Turner, Jimmie Vaughan, Bono Vox of U2 and Brad Whitford of Aerosmith.

Perhaps most importantly, Cruz's contributions to the art of luthiery, include massive inroads regarding the guitar aging, or distressing, process, and quality assurance. Both of these specialties he had to learn, develop and ultimately master before teaching them to builders. Currently, many techniques he created are practiced in custom shops throughout the world.

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