Artist: Sean Harkness

Sean is a solo artist on Windham Hill Records (BMG). He has recorded on numerous commercial releases with all kinds of guitars and basses and has toured nationally and internationally. Sean plays a G1070CE.

Coming Home

Sean writes: "This song appears on a few recordings now both on Windham Hill and in Japan, but this recording was made fresh for the Walden website.  It is a solo performance with no punches or edits (play ‘Find The Clams”!).  It was recorded on a very simple home studio setup consisting of a Roland VS 2400 and a couple of dynamic vocal mics.  I wanted to demonstrate to you how easy it is to make this guitar sound great right in your living room!"

First Show with my Walden G1070CE

Feb. 12, 2005 – First of all, let me say that this guitar is a big surprise. The first conversations with the Walden folks were all about the instrument. Then I received it and played it at length, opening up the sound of the wood, exploring its physical and tonal character. A couple of months later we spoke again to discuss how our relationship would continue. This was the first time I learned of the retail price. I was stunned! This is a top shelf guitar in so many respects, and its available to folks in a way most guitars of this caliber would only be dreamed of.

If you dream of one day owning a truly fine acoustic guitar but feel that it's just out of reach - guess again! That day is here.

Yesterday and today were the rehearsal and performance for a one-off show with Broadway diva Susan Egan (Beauty and the Beast, Cabaret, Thoroughly Modern Millie, etc.) at the West Side Playhouse Theatre. The tech for this show was pretty limited, so I was playing through my NYC Subway­ready guitar rig – a little 40 watt Pignose tube amp with a single 10" speaker. I've modified the amp slightly by replacing the tubes and the speaker with fuller sounding alternatives, but it's still a 1x10" combo. The Walden came out of there sounding like an acoustic guitar!

From my experience with Windham Hill recordings and tours I have encountered many fine acoustic instruments, and my expectations are high. From my years in the guitar shop with Chip Wilson (Wilson Guitars, Borys Guitars) I also have a very high standard of what to look for in an instrument. Both tonally and physically, the G1070CE holds up really well to scrutiny. The choice of materials, the structural approach (thin top, substantial yet easily playable neck, etc), and the fit-and-finish all contribute to a very good sounding and very playable guitar.

As for the electronics, the thoughtful placement of the Fishman unitís controls allows for the guitar to resonate freely, as opposed to having a big heavy box attached to the side through a gaping hole. The little gooseneck allows you to experiment with placement of the mic to find the 'sweet spot', while a small recessed mic-trim pot allows you to set the sensitivity of the sliding Ďblendí fader. These things combine to give you a great deal of control over the output of the sound through a single 1/4" jack.

The nature of the guitar chores was a combination of jazz chords, country licks, blues riffs, folk fingerpicking and strumming. With each song my new Walden proved capable over and over. By the end of the show I was very pleased to have presented all of this elegantly with such a fine instrument. Iíll be using this one out there a lot. Many thanks to Walden guitars!