Roland Scharbatke was born in the German city of Gotha, in Thuringia, in 1952. At 7, the entire family fled to West Germany, where he eventually found a new home in Iserlohn. His later career choice was based on his love for woods. He began an apprenticeship in cabinetmaking, where he learned everything he needed to know as a craftsman. As a journeyman, he deepened his knowledge and experience for another nine years in various workshops before he passed the master’s examination in this trade in 1979. In addition to his career as a cabinetmaker, his passion for playing the guitar logically led him to guitar-making.
He then traveled to Erlangen and visited the workshop of Gerold Karl Hannabach in Bubenreuth. Impressed by the knowledge and skills of the young craftsman, Gerold Karl Hannabach accepted Roland as his student in guitar-making. In 1989, Roland passed his master’s examination in the craft of plucked instrument making. Later in the same year, he set up his workshop in a wonderful old building in the center of Iserlohn.
Roland Scharbatke builds his guitars exclusively to the highest standards of craftsmanship and aesthetics, with purism as a trademark. His sense of aesthetics is expressed throughout the guitar, especially in the rosette and the headstock. Fascinated by the Japanese sense of style, clean lines, and simplicity, Roland Scharbatke builds his guitars without compromise, equally as musical instruments and art pieces.
This NOS (New Old Stock) guitar built in 2018 and numbered 108 is a real piece of art. It never left Roland’s workshop and stayed with him as a reference throughout the past four years. The elegant design was the first thing that struck us with this guitar, acoustically and aesthetically. Roland Scharbatke conceived every part of this instrument thoughtfully and skillfully, with sensible and meaningful ideas. The inlaid tuning machines, minimalist design of the headstock, unique rosette, and elegant proportions make this guitar a unique piece of art, not only as a musical instrument. The material quality of this particular instrument is spectacular, with the highest grade cedar soundboard and rare CITES-certified Brazilian rosewood back and sides. One hairline crack on each side of the fingerboard appeared during the construction. They were immediately stabilized by Mr. Scharbatke, who decided to go on with the guitar’s construction using this piece of wood, believing it was exceptional for its sound quality. Roland was indeed right, and this guitar’s sound is incredible. With its lattice construction, this instrument’s huge volume easily fills any room, captivating its audience with its distinctive outspoken voice.
Watch the presentation video of this particular guitar below, where you will find a lot of additional information about its playability and sound.
|Back and sides:||Brazilian rosewood (CITES certified)|
|Air body frequency:||F|
|Strings:||Knobloch EDC 34.0|
|Case:||Hiscox Pro II “Siccas Guitars” Edition|