Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Archtop Guitar

James D'Aquisto (American, New York 1935–1995 Corona, California)
New York, United States
Maple, macassar ebony, iron, brass
Length: 39 13/16 in. (101.1 cm) Width: 15 5/8 in. (40.2 cm);
Credit Line:
Purchase, Gary Larson and Peter Watrous Gifts, 2014
Accession Number:
2014.274a, b
Not on view
This guitar was used by the famed New York jazz musician Jim Hall and made specifically for him by the luthier James D'Aquisto. Though D'Aquisto was famous for his carved archtop guitars, this instrument features a two-ply laminated top of maple with a gold-to-red sunburst finish. The guitar has a DeArmond / Guild humbucker pickup and was played with electric amplification by Hall. The white plastic binding was painted over with the sunburst finish (per instructions from Hall), but two lines of "purfling" have been drawn on around the top of the guitar. The instrument has a single cutaway and the neck has twenty frets with solid pearloid square decorations. The headstock has a broken pediment design, used by D'Aquisto on many instruments, and the name of the maker is inlaid in cursive letters made of pearloid. Macassar ebony is used for the floating pickguard, tailpiece, adustable bridge, volume and tone knobs.

This guitar was Jim Hall's main guitar from 1983 until 2003 when a near replica of it was made by the luthier Roger Sadowsky, who would later make a model of guitars based upon this guitar by D'Aquisto.

Jim Hall appeared with this guitar in countless magazine articles, publicity stills, and album covers. The instrument was used in the following albums: Live at Village West (with Ron Carter, Concord, 1984), Telephone (with Ron Carter, Concord, 1985), Power of Three (with Michael Petrucciani and Wayne Shorter, Blue Note, 1986), Jim Hall's Three (with Steve La Spina and Akira Tana, Concord, 1986), These Rooms (Denon, 1988), All Across the City (Concord, 1989), Live at Town Hall, Vols. 1 and 2 (MusicMasters, 1990), Subsequently (MusicMasters, 1991), Youkali (CTI, 1993), Something Special (Inner City, 1993), Dedications & Inspirations (Telarc, 1993), Dialogues (Telarc, 1995), Textures (Telarc, 1996), Panorama: Live at the Village Vanguard (Telarc, 1997), By Arranagement (Telarc, 1998), Jim Hall & Pat Metheny (Telarc, 1999), Grand Slam: Live at the Regatta Bar (with Joe Lovano, Telarc, 2000), Jim Hall & Basses (Telarc, 2001).
Signature: Inside the guitar: James D'Aquisto / 5/20/83 / 110.
Jim Hall
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