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Serenity
05-06-2004, 07:16 PM
In my search for the perfect first guitar I went to a store today where, in addition to Tacomas, the owner is quite a fan of Yairi Alvarez Guitars.

I hadn't seen them mentioned on the forums since I joined so I wanted to throw the name out there and see what you all have heard about them.

Play2PraiseHim
05-06-2004, 07:27 PM
Yairi put high quality laminates on the map. He changed the word from a negative to a positive. Very nice quality tone woods, craftmanship, and tone!!! I find the necks to be too thin and low profile for my fingerstyle of playing. Unlike Takamine's they sound great unplugged and plugged in. Their electronics are tops as well!!! Ani Difranco and Monte Montgomery both play Yairi's . Do a web search on Monte Montgomery for some sound clips and check out what he does with his Yair Dy62c. This a beautiful cutaway dread with laminated quilted mahogony back/sides, and solid cedar top. He is like the Jimi Hendix of the acoustic.

BigMo66
05-06-2004, 07:29 PM
I've owned 2 Yairis, 1 was an all-Mahogany Sunburst dreadnaught and the other a Dreadnaught cutaway with the system 500 electronics. Both very nice guitars. Both with solid tops and laminated back & sides. Good quality all around. Yairis were super popular for a while, but have lost some of that popularity in recent years. The one beef I have is the price. I paid $1375 for the DY-74C. Nice, but my Tacoma was half that and all-solid with better tone. I do however wish I had never got rid of the all Mahogany Yairi. It was sweet and pretty, but I thought I needed a pickup and a cutaway and traded up. Everyone has that story.

I came across a DY57S at a job I was doing and tried to talk the customer out of it, but he had it for 15 years and said it was a keeper. Rats, I thought I was going to get that thing.

Anyway, good guitars. Only the high enders are all-solid though and there are cheaper guitars for sure.

sc morris
05-06-2004, 07:45 PM
IMO, Yairi's are probably the most under-rated guitars on the planet. Since they're made overseas, they get the old "import stigma" attached. This is purely out of ignorance! Yes, they are made in Japan....but they are made in Japan by master guitar builders.

I've played several of them and I liked every one of them. They are somewhat rare in these parts with only a shop or two carrying them. One of my old friends has two of those really slim ones....I believe they are the "Fusion series"....man, what an incredible guitar. When you plug these in, they really do come alive. I've also played quite a few dreads that I really liked. They are also fairly inexpensive when buying them used.

Steve314 should be along any minute singing the praises of his Yairi. Go to his website and check out some of the photos of people playing his. It looks like he's used this thing as a weapon in several bar fights! And apparently it's still holding together. :)

charlemagne52
05-06-2004, 07:54 PM
Only owned one, a classical, but it gave a lot of sound for the bucks. Kazuo Yairi used to have the best tonewood stash on the planet.

BigMo66
05-06-2004, 08:24 PM
I don't think they get the "import stigma" from educated folks. They have always been known as quality guitars. Lot's of famous entertainers used them for a quite some time also. A lot of japanese guitars are and have been great guitars. Some of the Martin clones made years a go are very collectable and highly prized. Tokai made some killer guitars.

Used Yairis can be gotten at a good price, but brand spanking new ones sure aint cheap!

sc morris
05-06-2004, 08:30 PM
I don't think they get the "import stigma" from educated folks. They have always been known as quality guitars.

I think it's mostly by the uneducted, snob guitar buyers who think if it's not made in the US, it must not be good. I've got a nice, early 90's, Jap Strat that I would put up against any USA Strat. :)

JRGill
05-06-2004, 08:39 PM
My first guitar instructor had a Yairi Alvarez, and I thought it sounded really good. He told me that having that "Y" in the headstock logo equals a big jump in quality over a regular old Alvarez. Haven't heard anything negative about the brand... you just don't see a whole lot of them around for some reason.

Serenity
05-06-2004, 08:44 PM
My understanding is that the non-Yairi Alvarez guitars are mass produced in Korea or China and not anything like the Yairi which are hand made in Japan.

sc morris
05-06-2004, 08:45 PM
My understanding is that the non-Yairi Alvarez guitars are mass produced in Korea or China and not anything like the Yairi which are hand made in Japan.
That is correct....not the same at all.

ozrufus
05-06-2004, 08:53 PM
I just sold my two Yairis in order to take the Breedlove plunge. They were both great guitars and so underrated!! I wouldn't hesitate with a Yairi. Best kept secret in the acoustic guitar world.

BigMo66
05-06-2004, 08:59 PM
This is a tough crowd and all-solid, USA made guitars are going to be received a bit easier for sure. This darn post has re-kindled my desire to have my Mahogany Yairi back :p

mdunn
05-06-2004, 09:49 PM
I came across a Yari at an estate sale. It was a 1983 DY73. I didn't know anything about it but I called a dealer friend and he said if it is in good conditon buy it. I put a low bid in on it and on Sunday PM it was mine. It was the find of the century for me.

It is a mahogany body with a caramel colored spruce top. It was in almost mint condition. The Yari paperwork and the original warranty information was still in the case. It is a great sounding guitar. A setup and new Exlir strings was all it needed to make it come alive. I play my Taylors more, but I play the Yari when I want to hear the very mellow and soft sound it produces. It is a very soothing guitar.

kilgorekid
05-06-2004, 10:28 PM
My DY77 turns 30 this year! I had it before I had my kids! It has mellowed over the years and produces a tone that is very pleasing. I highly recommend an Alvarez Yairi-They are truly quality guitars.
Bill

michaelw
05-06-2004, 10:42 PM
and post the pic of his '86 dy66 :)

hopefully, one day, a guitar will have that kind of meaning for me

maybe in another 15 years or so... that would be cool

JJFIELDS
05-06-2004, 11:40 PM
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`

ozrufus
05-06-2004, 11:54 PM
Yeah, smack me again! I still wish I would have grabbed that WY-1-12 when I had the chance! I take it your e-bay transaction went without incident? I was really hoping for a deadbeat bidder, so I could have a second chance on that one!

Ya snooze ya looze!


Jeff
Yeah, it's long gone, Jeff. I agree you should've snatched it up. I'd much rather it gone to a forum member. Maybe next go-round, huh?!

SR
05-07-2004, 12:29 AM
At Daddy's Junky Music they had an Alvarez AJ60S that I tried once and I have to admit I feel sorry for not getting it it felt great and sounded awesome as well and the built in pick ups were very good :( Hmmmmm Oh well an other time perhaps right Now I have GAS for a Carvin MTS amp that I'm saving for :D LOL cant' wait to get that and plug my strat in :D

marklyn
05-07-2004, 01:06 AM
Here's some pix of Steve's guitar in action. About half-way down the page I'm playing it, Rebecca (Rejoice Music) is playing it and Paul Johnson of the Surfaris is playing it. Great guitar, nice feel and tone, and you certainly don't have to worry about scratching it when you play it!
http://bigsteve.stringdancer.net/photo3.html

Steve314
05-07-2004, 01:09 AM
Steve314 should be along any minute singing the praises of his Yairi.

Hehehehehe... Ya' think???

Mine is an '86 DY-66, which I've owned since 1987. It's one of the Japanese hand-built jobs. When I got it, it was in pristine condition.

Now, not so much:

http://bigsteve.stringdancer.net/images/woodshed1a.jpg


Here's a picture of our own Rebecca (Rejoice Music) playing it:

http://bigsteve.stringdancer.net/images/tgfrebecca.jpg


And Marklyn:

http://bigsteve.stringdancer.net/images/tgfmarklyn.jpg


And even Paul Johnson of The Surfari's:

http://bigsteve.stringdancer.net/images/tgfpauljohnson.jpg


Quite simply, this is the best guitar I've ever owned. It's survived what would have destroyed any other guitar I can think of. It's been on fire, hit by a car, been in a flood, fallen out of "the truck", has been dropped down stairs, and it keeps on keepin' on.

I can't kill it. It won't let me...

Steve

thisisbrianly
05-07-2004, 01:22 AM
Steve-Been on fire??? Whaaa??

marklyn
05-07-2004, 01:26 AM
Nice one Steve! Looks like we simul-posted! :D

A friend of mine is looking for a guitar and I'm recommending that she seriously look at the Alvarez-Yaris. I may end up guitar shopping with her, so that's probably what we will start looking at. I just need to find out who's got 'em in the area!

Steve314
05-07-2004, 01:31 AM
Nice one Steve! Looks like we simul-posted! :D

A friend of mine is looking for a guitar and I'm recommending that she seriously look at the Alvarez-Yaris. I may end up guitar shopping with her, so that's probably what we will start looking at. I just need to find out who's got 'em in the area!

Marklyn, check Alan's Music in La Mesa. It's a minor trek from Carlsbad, but I don't think anyone else in San Diego County carries them...

Steve

Steve314
05-07-2004, 01:33 AM
Steve-Been on fire??? Whaaa??

Did you miss the whole "Would've destroyed any other guitar" part?

Seriously, it's an ugly, drunken story. It's funny in retrospect, but it was pretty heinous at the time.

But, as a result, I feel completely at ease taking the Yairi camping!

Steve

D28guy
05-07-2004, 02:25 AM
I have an Alvarez-Yairi DY-38. The label says it was made in 1991. If you covered up the headstock you would think it was a Martin D-18. Solid spruce top and laminate mahagony back and sides.

I got it used for a ridiculously low price, due to its poor condition, but its poor condition was not due to being abused, thrown around, left in hot cars, etc.

It was the normal "wear and tear" you see on a guitar owned by a PLAYER...someone who plays it a LOT, and plays it HARD. I'm guessing he was a bluegrasser who played in a group, and also jammed a lot with it.

Its guitar #4 of my 4 dreads, only because the other 3 are all solid wood.(Washburn D-44SW, Martin D-15S, Martin D-28). Its basically my travel guitar, but it sounds and plays really good.

Also, for some reason...I think the height of the strings between the saddle and soundhole might have something to do with it...its my favorite fingerpicking guitar.

Mike

mdunn
05-07-2004, 06:10 AM
Steve 314

So your Yairi is the Timex of the guitar world.

It takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin', is what John Cameron Swayzie used to say.

Steve314
05-07-2004, 11:35 AM
So your Yairi is the Timex of the guitar world.

That's one way of lookin' at it, I guess!

Steve

koaguitarman
05-07-2004, 12:22 PM
Steve 314

So your Yairi is the Timex of the guitar world.

It takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin', is what John Cameron Swayzie used to say.
Or, do you mean "It takes a lickin' and keeps on pickin'"
http://smileys.smileycentral.com/cat/5/5_2_103.gif
Russ

Rico
05-07-2004, 01:26 PM
A buddy of mine bought a new 1975 DY57 when we were in college. He still has it and gigs/records with it. It plays and sounds great. I'm uneducated on the Yairi's...what is the significance of the numbers (57, 62, etc).

I have a Carvin MTS amp with extension cab...it sounds great but it has way more horsepower than I need. I keep the switch on 50 watts and it's plenty.

Rick

jtarns
05-07-2004, 02:13 PM
I am still looking for a Yairi DY-92 in good condition. It has a lute back made with alternating mahogany and rosewood strips. A very visually pleasing guitar, and sounds great too. :D I have only seen a couple in my search, both of which were in lets say not in the best condition. The search continues