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Everything You Need to Know About Guitar Tonewoods (In Alphabetical Order!) If you’re a guitarist, new or experienced, you should have an idea of what different guitar woods mean for an instrument’s sound. Each popular wood is used for a specific reason. As you read the following paragraphs, you’ll discover a selection of common guitar tonewoods, alphabetically listed, and the purposes they serve. It does bear noting that there are differences between guitar body woods and neck woods. The guitar tonewoods that are featured in this particular article are body woods. 1. Ash wood initially enjoyed its rise to popularity in the 1950s when an immensely popular guitar company started using it. Swamp ash, taken from the lower sections of wetland trees that grow roots below the water, is the best to use to make guitar bodies. This type of ash wood produces a twangy, sweet sound that was popular in early rock and roll and modern country music. 2. Basswood is among the most prevalent forms of wood and is, thus, frequently used by budget guitar manufacturers. If you’re a brand new guitarist who didn’t want to spend a lot of money on his or her first instrument, the odds are good that it’s made out of basswood. Basswood typically offers a well-balanced tonality and the wood is a light color, with hardly any grain.
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3. Mahogany is one of the most popular guitar woods. This richly hued wood is not only pleasing to the eye, but offers a deep, pleasant tone. Some of the best selling guitars in the world are made out of mahogany tonewood.
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4. The maple/mahogany combination is extremely popular on laminated body guitars. These guitars have a sound that simply cannot be replicated as a result of combining mahogany’s deep tones with maple’s sharp clarity. 5. Rosewood, a pricey option, is seen as a neck wood much more often than it is a body wood. There was an important exception that was sold by a globally famed brand in the first part of the 1970s. This particular guitar was even used by one of the world’s most famous bands. 6. Certain individuals are very fond of walnut as a guitar wood, though this tends to be more about it’s aesthetic than it’s sound. There is nothing off about walnut wood’s tonality, but it’s deep, dark color does make it stand out in any setting. 7. Exotic woods are not often used to craft mass-produced guitars, but they bear noting here because custom guitar makers frequently utilize them. Professional guitarists often choose to invest in an instrument or two that is crafted from exotic wood. Some of the most prevalent are bubinga, wenge, and muira piranga. A host of other options also exist.