Chuck Wayne (Feb. 27, 1923 – July 29, 1997) was, of course, one of America’s finest jazz guitarists. Diane Wayne’s notes from his memorial service say it better than I could: Chuck was a self-taught virtuoso whose elegant legato style and rich harmonies influenced a generation of guitarists and other instrumentalists. He was able to incorporate such diverse influences as Charlie Christian and Coleman Hawkins with those of classical artists like Andres Segovia and Maurice Ravel into a unique style. In addition to his conducting, arranging and performance skills, he was renowned as a singer’s accompanist working with the likes of Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra, Vic Damone, Johnny Mathis, Steve and Edie and Tony Bennett. He recorded with George Shearing, Dizzy Gilespie, Lester Young, Benny Goodman, Joe Puma. He played in the orchestras of Gary Moore, Carol Burnette, Ed Sullivan, Merv Griffin. Diane says: Chuck was compassionate yet disciplined, empathetic yet uncompromising, often brilliant, always driven by a commitment to excellence. Similar attributes can be said about Bob Benedetto who built this unique instrument for Chuck Wayne in 1982.
It has many unusual features including the floral headstock cap, carved in relief above the tuners at the top, a radiused fingerboard with a 1 23/32nd” nut width, a short scale of 24 ¾” nut to saddle, a string spacing at the bridge saddle of 2 3/16th”. Tuners are gold-plated Schaller Minis with gold small buttons; the nut is carved of bone and is fluted (quite beautifully). The unbound fingerboard is inlaid with 9 pearl dotmarkers in 8 positions. Below the squared end, elevated fingerboard is a Gibson Johnny Smith gold-plated humbucking pickup with exposed magnets. The pickguard is the abbreviated ebony version Bob uses on his Manhattan but there the resemblance ends as this guitar has “fiddle edge” sides, in which the top and the back are built out slightly wider than the side resulting in an architectural detail worthy of inclusion in the finest museum collection. This story is refuted by Diane Wayne, but we have been told by a person who knew this illustrious player and took lessons from him that Chuck referred to the floral cap at the top of the headstock as his "Capodastro de frock," which is from the Italian as "garment for the head”or if you will, "hair piece."
The back and sides are flamed (figured) maple while the top and back raised edges are birds-eye maple. The top is carved of close and parallel-grained spruce, the back is two-piece. The actual width at the lower bout is 16 3/8ths” because of the fiddle-edge sides; the upper bout is 12 ¼”, and the waist is 9 ¾”. The builder provided a gold-plated strap pin in the upper bass side near the neck and the tailpin doubles as a phone jack. The guitar features the Benedetto ebony harp tailpiece (a feature that Diane Wayne says was initially suggested to Bob by Chuck Wayne) and a Benedetto carved ebony two-piece adjustable bridge. A dark wood truss rod cover is pressed to the headplate by one recessed screw; a volume control depends off of the treble side of the pickguard. Large open F-holes are long and languorous measuring 6 ¾” in total length. The condition is excellent showing minor signs of use (yes, but it’s Chuck Wayne’s DNA on that fretboard), a small vinyl burn on back of headstock, some chips around the edges, bings on the bindings, dings on the dorsal and ventral surfaces. We need to point out that there is an area of split wood running horizontally, against the grain, in the upper treble cutaway bout on the side. Leroy Aiello, our head of repair, says that this can happen anywhere that wood is bent, and that, since the guitar has two raised wooden caps on the top and bottom sides, this stressed area will probably not continue to spread. Our workshop has performed masterful skills to level the frets, allowing the instrument to be eminently sonorous and easily playable. You have a guitar here with a remarkable provenance, made for and owned by a highly influential professional with a world-renowned reputation, and made by the hand of one of the finest arched top guitarmakers extant.
WAS $55,000 BUT NOW ON SALE FOR THIS RATHER UNBELIEVABLE REDUCTION: Our SALE Discount Price is $20,615.00 and Our SALE Cash Discount Price is $19,995.00