Having featured 14 year old Jazz Guitar Wunderkind Andreas Varady in an interview for Jazz Guitar Life, I must say that I was more than impressed with his maturity and spirit. Since that time I have been keeping informal tabs on Andreas from time to time as I’m always interested in who he is playing with, and for that matter, what he’s playing on. Then just today, and thanks to Howard Paul, the president and CEO of Benedetto Guitars Inc., (and a very gifted jazz guitar player I might add), I saw a picture of a recent tour that Andreas did with drummer David Hodek, who, like Andreas, is a 14 year old wunderkind on the drums. What I noticed immediately was that the guitar Andreas was playing looked like a Benedetto. But wait! In the JGL interview, Andreas talked about playing a Tokai archtop, similar to an ES 175. Wanting to get to the bottom of this, I commented on the image and Howard Paul was nice enough to reply back with a brief history of the guitar. I asked him if it would be all right to post his response in a blog post and he agreed. So here it is:
“After seeing Andreas playing with a number of our Artists and hearing he was a fan of our guitars, we spoke to him to see if he felt he was interested in one. It’s great to see the next generation of great players have an opportunity to use the very best instruments, so we worked with Andreas (with a little feedback from some of his mentors) and found the perfect model for his stature and most typical playing scenario. Bob Benedetto and I video conferenced with Andreas and his father to make sure we were going to get it right the first time. We looked at all the guitars he was playing and how they fit him. We came up with an almost entirely standard Bambino Deluxe with a custom finish and inlayed tailpiece. The color was Andreas’ idea, and frankly it looks amazing on stage! We are looking forward hearing Andreas develop through the years. We couldn’t be more proud of him or excited for him.“
So there you have it. At 14 years of age, Andreas has his own Benedetto signature model…and if that isn’t enough, he is also endorsed by D’Addario strings and Planet Waves cables. Sheesh…and I have a hard time getting a cup of coffee I’m paying for!! And don”t get me started on Andreas making the cover of both Guitar Player Magazine AND Just Jazz Guitar!!
Seriously though, all this attention is well deserved and if you haven’t yet heard of Andreas Varady, visit him at his website and check him out on youtube. To mirror Howard Paul’s sentiments, I couldn’t be more proud of Andreas or more excited for him! Way to go Andreas
For even more information on the Bambino Deluxe, visit Andreas’ Benedetto artist page. And while you’re there, browse through the Benedetto site to view some of the most beautiful archtops one can ever imagine or hope to play.
Filed Under: Blog
About the Author: Lyle Robinson is the owner/creator/editor of Jazz Guitar Life, a popular web based publication focusing on the Jazz Guitar Community and related news.