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Monday
Mar292010

Tauna Tuokkola

We met this wonderful lady at the Frankfurt music show. She works as a sales manager for TV Jones and guess what, she is half finnish! What a coincidence. I am sure we are going to do a lot of business in the future. We also met Tom, the man behind TV Jones and he gave us some valuable technical information on guitars and pickups. We joined the TV Jones pickup fan club....

 

Sunday
Mar282010

Musik Messe experience

Back from the first trade show! Westend Guitars had a joint booth with another finnish brand called Kantare Guitars. Since I have no experience from previous music shows I cannot tell anything clever about where the music business is going. That much I can tell that the noise in electric guitar and drum section was terrible.

However, it only makes me more convinced that we have the right concept: Who the h... can play so loud at home? Most of the guitars did not sound much anything until the knobs of the amp were pointing south east. Luckily we were in the same hall with acoustic guitars that enabled us to present our guitars with our new Westend Tube 15 amp. Westend Deluxe Jazz with TV Classic pickups and the amp master volyme at 3-4 produced a sound to die for (without breaking the listeners ears). We also made an great discovery: Esa, the sales manager for Kantare guitars tried out this combination. He did not recognize himself as an electric guitar player but boy, did he produce a great sound with that guitar! He only played with his fingers but the sound was everything I had hoped for and then some. He only proved the old truth that the sound is in the players fingers. Yet, I want to say that the guitar and the amp had something to do with the sound.

Here some pictures on our booth.

Monday
Mar152010

New Specs for Jumbo

We changed the specs of Jumbo! After intesive testing of our Jumbo model, we finally decided to go for a 13 fret neck and a short 24,75" scale. Why? This configuration enabled us to move the bridge just a little towards the center of the lower bout. The improvement of the sound is incredible. Jumbo now excells in gentle fingerstyle play and we believe it is one of the best acoustic guitars at any price.

Monday
Mar152010

Kari Kasanen

Kari is the founder and senior partner of a Talent Partners consulting company. His guitar is the first production sample of Westend Deluxe Blues with Seymor Duncan humbuckers. Kari is a very nice and smart guy. No wonder he has successful company. This is what he wrote to us about himself:

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Monday
Mar152010

Jussi Lampela, jazz guitarist, composer

The man behind our first studio session is Mr. Jussi Lampela. Jussi has graduated from the jazz faculty of Helsinki Sibelius Academy as Master of Music, electric guitar. He has also studied in Musicians´s Institute in Los Angeles and Kungliga Musikhögskolan in Stockholm. Jussi has played in several jazz bands, made music for TV and has also toured with several artists. Today he spends most of his time composing music, making arrangements for larger productions and some teaching, too. Jussi is a co-founder and a partner of a music studio called "Neomusic", where we made our first recordings.

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Friday
Feb192010

Interested in buying a prototype?

During our product development process we keep getting different kinds of samples. In the end there are so many, that we need to get rid of them. If you are interested in buying a one off guitar that is one way or the other different from our regular models, pls. contact us. The prices are VERY attractive as we have no intention to make money on these prototype guitars.

Saturday
Jan302010

Frankfurt Musik Messe 2010

If you intend to visit Frankfurt Musik Messe 2010, come and see us at our booth H92 in hall 3.1. We are there with another finnish company, Kantare by Liikanen guitars. Kantare guitars are classical guitars with very interesting internal structure. Worth checking! The booth is not big but is is a start of our international sales. 

Monday
Dec142009

Guitar playing and Flow experience

I received a great story today from friend of mine. Decided to share the story with you. Here goes:

We are born with five senses. They  say that women have the sixth sense also, but who knows. During our childhood and the entire life our brain collects millions of pieces of information from the world outside us during every second. This information is gathered and understood in the inner parts of our brain. We can enjoy and experience the world by tasting, smelling, feeling, seeing and hearing.

In a rare moment of Flow we are able to forget the outside world, focus only on what are doing and experience a great moment on peacefulness and emotion.  To most of us Flow is completely focused motivation. It is a single-minded immersion and represents perhaps the ultimate in harnessing the emotions in the service of performing and learning. In flow the emotions are not just contained and channeled, but positive, energized, and aligned with the task at hand. The hallmark of flow is a feeling of spontaneous joy, even rapture, while performing a tasks.

Music has been in my life from the beginning. My father was an first class concert violinist in Viipuri ( St Petersburg ) . So probably I heard a lot of music already before I came to this real world. As young I was wild and sporty, so I was forced to attend  flute and music lessons in one the most valued schools in Finland, Tapiola School. Nominated Professor Erkki Pohjola as my music teacher. I did not have the talent of rare music virtuosos like many children in our school. But by hard work and training I grow up as a good and humble amateur musician.

My first instrument was and is flute, with 45 years of playing I consider myself as a good flutist. Few years ago I started to play piano, or Grand piano in fact,  which filled our living room. I hoped this would motivate our young son Jesper  to play music. I ended up training piano myself and my son having still more time in the golf courses.

Guitar came to my life four years ago. Already at school my wish had been to play guitar, so I thought finally my flow in music would come with guitar playing. My guitar hero was Mark Knopfler. Even with plenty of mathematical studies at the Technical university I was first shocked by the millions of variations and choices on how to play guitar.  I am on my road learning new every week. The great pleasure of life at this age is that you afford to have the best of equipment and toys. This also meant that my guitar has to be the best available. So I trusted my old school friend and holiday house neighbour Heikki Holvikari. Heikki’s Westend guitar makes my every guitar session an enjoyment and Flow experience.

Kari Kasanen

On the road to the secrects of guitar playing 

Raasepori 14.12.209

Friday
Nov202009

Social media

Yesterday evening I made a test to see how social media works. There is an internet site for music people in Finland called Muusikoiden.net. I put a announcement of birth of a new brand Westend Guitars on the discussion forum. For those who underestimate the power of social media: hit rate on our web pages made a huge jump from approx. average 50 page views to 1500 page views.

Wednesday
Sep162009

White Fish

My wife, our 2.5 year old dog Onni (happiness or luck in english) and I were on our cottage by the sea one weekend last winter. She went to buy things from the near by city and we were left fishing on our property. The sea was frozen but the ice was relatively thin. There was a spot just some 50 feet from us where the ice had melted and we were fishing with a worm from that melted spot from the land. Suddenly Onni saw a bird on the other side of the bay and started runnig towards the melted spot. Before I could do anything the ice broke and he was trying back on ice. Hopeless.. I had no life vest, rope or anything else and I propably had only a minute or two to react somehow.

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