These videos and audio files are bonus content related to the April 2015 issue of Guitar World. For the full range of interviews, features, tabs and more, pick up the new issue on newsstands now or at the Guitar World Online Store.
PLATINUM AWARD WINNER
Maple is the tonewood of choice for the back and sides of most acoustic archtop and jazz guitars, but relatively few flattop guitar models have maple bodies.
Part of the reason is that attributes like impressive volume projection, bright treble and exceptional individual note definition that make maple ideal for an archtop are not always ideal for traditional flattop acoustic tones. However, these problems are less the fault of the materials and more due to construction techniques.
Simply put, bracing patterns and other construction details that work fine with rosewood or mahogany backs and sides aren’t always ideal when the back and sides are made of maple.
Maple has enjoyed popularity as a tonewood for jumbo flattops, but most players generally prefer these instruments for strumming loud rhythms and little else (which is why maple jumbos have been the flattop of choice for players from Elvis Presley to Pete Townshend).