paul simon's guild

Paul Simon’s Guild Acoustic Guitar

Back in the ’60s, Simon and Garfunkel were one of the best acts around. Though their setup was very simple, two voices and an acoustic guitar. During this time, Paul Simon was using a Guild acoustic guitar (the F-30 Special) which produced the most perfect acoustic guitar tone that I can think of. Warm, balanced, and extremely responsive.

Sometime in the ’70s and later, Paul Simon played many different acoustic guitars. Though something seemed lost in his acoustic tone I feel. Nothing sounded quite as beautiful as his Guild guitar. Take a listen to what it sounds like:

This has led me to become very interested in Guild acoustic guitar. I believe they are a real competitor to Martin and Gibsons.

Here are some pictures Paul Simon with his Guild:

paul simon's guild

Paul Simon's Guild 2

Paul Simon's Guild with George Harrison

3 thoughts on “Paul Simon’s Guild Acoustic Guitar”

  1. Each guitar and model has its own characteristics: the Guild you mention is big body, solid top with enough bracing to stand in for a conga drum. Then there are the strings Paul was using to take into there are the differences in tone and sound between examples of the same model: one F30 won’t sound like another F30.

    1. I have an F30R and it gets very close to Paul’s tone. Experimenting with strings is a big part as you mentioned. I’m finding I can get the “Old Friends” tone with silk and steel strings.

  2. Paul played more than one F-30 during those years. If you examine them closely in photos you will be able to note the differences. The earlier one had a smaller pick guard and a volute on the back of the neck. The latter F-30 (on display at the rock-n-roll Hall of Fame) had a larger pick guard and no volute on back of the neck. I seem to remember reading in a guitar magazine where Paul Simon was interviewed concerning having Guild redesign the F-30. If memory serves me correctly he had the dimensions changed on the body making it slightly larger and thicker. I also think there might have been some special work to the internal bracing as well. And he had the back and sides made of Brazilian Rosewood as the F-30s of that time manufactured by Guild had Mahogany back and sides. According to Hans Moust, author of “The Guild Guitar Book,” Simon had a couple of these made. Getting back to the magazine interview I mentioned earlier Simon said that Guild made a limited run of the Guild F-30R Specials at the time.

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