Otis Luxton believes that the current instrument market is boring. So many modern-made instruments are ubiquitous in sound and style and his aim is to give people the option of something more inspiring and suited to each player. He knows how important it is to have an instrument that works well and by hand making one, he can incorporate each individual musician’s personal requirements into the instrument.
He is passionate about music and giving musicians the opportunity to have the perfect instrument with which to practise their art. Nothing makes him happier than to see people playing music from the heart – and like any artist, the musician needs to use the right tool to do this as effectively as possible.
Otis seeks to use all British woods for the instruments he makes; this is fairly unconventional and makes his instruments unique. For a long time, both instrument makers and musicians have coveted exotic ‘tonewoods’ such as rosewoods and mahoganies; the reason for this, in Otis’s opinion, is simply the allure of exoticism and not because they make better instruments. Within the British Isles we have the kinds of wood that create beautiful instruments, both in sound and appearance, including: almost all the fruitwoods such as cherry, walnut, apple and pear; hardwoods like oak, ash, chestnut and sycamore also work beautifully, not forgetting cedar, yew, box and holly. The belief is that we have all the variety and quality we would ever need to produce some beautiful instruments, without having to resort to using often unsustainably sourced hardwoods from South America, India or Asia which are so often found in musical instruments today. The ethos of working with the materials that we have around us, is not only practical, sensible and responsible, but also gives us an intimate connection with what is produced, making for an instrument that is both personal and truly cultural.
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