T-series Electric Gypsy guitars from Teye: Radical boutique at its best

La Pirata Guitar by Teye

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Teye Guitars ™ have taken the concept of handmade small shop instruments to an entirely different level with breathtaking finishes, outstanding tonewoods and exquisite craftsmanship.

The T-series of electrics, handmade in Austin, Texas under the watchful eye of luthier Teije Wijnterp, better known as Teye (pronounced tie-ya), have a vibe that’s both old and new.

Here are a few images. Click to Enlarge!

Devoted to the guitar

Raised in Europe in the 1960s, Teye, a skilled player of many styles including flamenco, felt the need to build an electric guitar that reflected the sum total of his creative inspirations. To Teye, the guitar has always meant life and visa versa. The company website explains his succinct philosophy:

“My name is Teye and I feel privileged to devote my life to guitar.”

The Electric Gypsy

Teye’s guitars all have the same Les Paulish body shape; however, any similarities to Gibson stop there. Five stunning models fall under Teye’s T-Series: the La Pirata, El Platero, Media Noche, “Scallywag™” and 5-string “Scallywag™.”

A devotee of guitar slingers from the 60s and 70s, including legendary icon Jimi Hendrix, it’s not hard to tell how Teye came up with his distinctive creation when the story is accessed online:

“The result is my Electric Gypsy. The design combines everything I have always liked about guitars: three pickups, simple switching, vast array of ‘real’ sounds at my fingertips, 24 fret heel-less neck, the direct response of a flamenco guitar and playability.”

Note Teye’s guitars all sport the “Electric Gypsy” format.

Options

Teye Guitars™ are custom made. As a result, the finish possibilities on T-Series instruments are limitless. However, there is an organic quality that, at times, can resemble brilliant blue turquoise, abalone, fine ceramic tile or richly worked leather. A new “Shipwreck” finish has just come out on the “Scallywag.”

Perhaps what renders this singularly one-of-a-kind is the engraved aluminum alloy face plate that stylishly adorns the front where a pickguard traditionally lies. Teye claims to have selected aluminum because it “clearly sounded the best.” Plating on the back is also offered.

Tonewoods

Light weight mahogany is standard wood for the body, sometimes Korina. Walnut is used for the neck.

Pick-ups and electronics

The T-Series can be fitted with either a pair or a trio of celebrated DiMarzio’s.

Electronics on the T-Series are not run-of-the-mill and why would they be? Sonic blending is mixed by way of a master tone control, two volumes and the master “mood” knob, all of them aluminum, which adds to an already striking appearance.

The bridge and tailpiece resemble industrial works of art

Form follows function is not a lackluster theory here. The sharply edged matching aluminum bridge and tailpiece are said to offer superior tone. In addition, a scrolled edge along with Teye’s signature at the bottom of the hardware complements an element of refined class.

The price

Teye Guitars™ can be purchased direct or from an authorized dealer. The T-Series starts at $2500. As boutique guitars go, the T-Series from Teye offers an inventive take on sound and beauty.

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Paul Wolfle

As a vintage and contemporary music enthusiast, guitars dominate Paul’s life. He plays slide in open tunings on a National Steel Tricone resonator and electric blues, in standard tuning, on an assortment of other instruments including his white Fender Stratocaster.

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