Reprise - Introduction written by Josh Maxey
The idea of a great guitar getting made for the first time is a bit like an album. You have the raw material, your melodies, the forms, and where the solos will be. It all starts with a spark and once an aspect of the music takes shape, suddenly it has a life of its own and a beginning from which to proceed. If you’re lucky you might have another musician to work through the ideas with as they develop. In the bouncing back and forth, the album takes shape as a combination of the best of each musician.
Working with Freddy on the new Reprise model has been a special experience for me. It’s been as inspiring and creative as any album I’ve worked on. It started a year or so before production began with a question of if it were possible to take my DockStar which I love, and have it hand crafted and constructed like an arch top jazz guitar.
From everything I’ve seen, Freddy is always working behind the scenes on two main goals. One is that Phred customers have the best service experience possible. As a guitar teacher, I always want my students to have a great experience with the lessons. I know the study of music and a lesson time might be one of the highlights of a person’s day. I see that same adherence to caring about each individual with Phred Instruments. Phred guitars go out into the world and inspire people to take their next steps in music and no doubt bring joy to their owners and listeners. The other thing I’ve seen with Phred is a commitment to developing ideas and making the best instrument with the greatest value possible. Phred Instruments knows that we muciains need quality and inspiring instruments that are affordable.
The Reprise Koa offers something new. It's hand crafted by a small team of guitar makers. It has an arch top design with hand carved koa top and back, solid sides and striking maple binding. It is the realization of an idea. A hand crafted boutique guitar with a nod to tradition that is affordable for musicians.
Guitars are an extension of our musicianship. When we connect with an instrument it becomes a part of our sound. It vibrates with us and suggests the next notes or chords we play, along with responding to our imagination. The idea of a guitar being created to fulfill a dream is pretty exciting to me! There isn’t a guitar this size, shape and style with this quality of construction available from the big guitar companies.
Our idea was to create an instrument for all the musicians like myself that are looking for the best quality guitar with a nod to tradition while remaining its own individual instrument.
As the Reprise has taken shape, it’s form, themes and materials have added up to something more than their parts, just like a great album. I think having this guitar, with its concept and execution, is going to inspire many players to continue to realize their own musical dreams, write their next album, learn their next favorite song and take the next step in the unending path of music.
The fully hollow archtop body features a maple side, a solid koa back, and a solid koa top, with a dual humbucker setup, discrete split coil switches and a 3-way pickup toggle for 8 different tone combinations! There is one master volume and one master tone knob for dialing in your tone. The guitar strings pass over a floating bridge that is not anchored to the guitar body. Similar to a violin, banjo or mandolin bridge, the bridge simply rests on top of the body and is held in place by string tension. The ebony tailpiece is attached to the end of the guitar, holding the strings in place. There is one 1/4" standard guitar output jack on the side of the guitar body. Reprise ships inside a custom Hard Shell Case.
The maple core neck is set-in to the body with glue. The back of the neck contour is a C-shape that feels somewhere in between a strat and an LP neck, not too thin, and not too chunky either. The 2-octave ebony fingerboard has 24 medium jumbo frets which are leveled and milled here at our shop in Agoura Hills, California for a nice smooth feel along the edge of the fretboard and all around. The fretboard features a 15 inch radius which is perfect for soloing and playing chords up and down the fretboard. Topping off the fretboard are custom "powerful pill" pearloid inlays designed by PHRED instruments. At the top of the neck, you'll find a bone nut for good sustain, with a tilt-back 6-inline headstock featuring our signature Phred Instruments logo. Under the fretboard is the adjustable double-expanding truss rod, keeping the neck stable in any climate.
The PHRED instruments Reprise gets its inspiration from Trey Anastasio's Languedoc guitar.