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  #1  
Old 03-06-2021, 06:12 PM
Red_Label Red_Label is offline
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Default NGD: Eastman Caberet JB...

Been eye-balling this guitar at Music Villa in Bozeman, Montana for a while now. Paul, Blaise and the guys at MV are always a pleasure to deal with. Had played it a few times and really wanted it, but just had other priorities for my $$$. I took in a nice boutique tube amp that I haven't been using that traded it towards this guitar this morning. Loving it so far! A very lively, pleasant, sweet tone. The guitar feels lightly built and responsive ala the many Cordoba nylons that I've owned. What's really cool about this guitar is the arched back and the oval sound holes in the top and the upper bout. The hardshell case is this felt type of covering that I've never seen on a guitar case before. It's very classsy!

Fit and finish look to be pretty flawless. I also played a Cordoba Master Series Frederich as well (and seriously considered bringing it home). It was very responsive and full sounding, but with that chunky neck it was obviously designed for classical pieces and I really don't play classical any more. But for the more latin-flavored stuff that I do, as well as jazz type stuff... it would be hard to beat this Eastman. I'll have more impressions about it as I spend more time with it. The action is very comfortable, but I tend to shave my saddles to get them down to snappy, low flamenco levels instead of the cleaner, fuller classical tones. Since this guitar has a maple body and spruce top and seems lightly built, I should be able to get some responsive flamenco tones out of it as I do with my Cordobas.



"Eastman Caberet JB

Traditional style for the modern player. A must have for the fingerstyle and jazz players, the Cabaret is a seamless blend of traditional nylon and acoustic archtop that honors the deepest roots of craftsmanship.


Back & Side Wood: Figured Maple
Body Size: Cabaret
Top Wood: Solid Sitka Spruce
Nut Width: 1 15/16"
Neck Shape: Narrow Classical
Scale Length: 647mm
Pickup: LR Baggs
Tuners: Schaller Grand Tune
Case: Hardshell"











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  #2  
Old 03-07-2021, 08:53 AM
AndreF AndreF is offline
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Congrats! Cool looking guitar. And a relatively shorter scale too. Specs hint at a new hybrid kind of guitar, i.e. more classical than a conventional crossover, but differing from a true classical. Seems well suited for your style of play.
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Old 03-09-2021, 09:03 AM
Red_Label Red_Label is offline
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Originally Posted by AndreF View Post
Congrats! Cool looking guitar. And a relatively shorter scale too. Specs hint at a new hybrid kind of guitar, i.e. more classical than a conventional crossover, but differing from a true classical. Seems well suited for your style of play.
Thanks. Yeah, I think it'll be perfect for the cover of Amy Winehouse' "Valerie" that my daughter wants me to record guitar tracks, so she can record singing to it. She's entering a singing contest in the SLC area. When I want the snappier, more brash flamenco sound, I'll stick with my Cordoba GK Pro. But for the jazzier stuff, I think the Eastman will work better. That's what John Bascarino had in mind when he designed his Cabaret, which this is a clone of, sanctioned by, and even distributed by JB himself. Considering the design pedigree and relative rarity of this guitar (whether in Eastman or JB version), I'm feeling very fortunate to have secured this guitar... and like my trusty GK Pro has, I think this guitar will be sticking around. I haven't even plugged it in yet, so I need to find how this passive pickup sounds.
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Old 04-22-2021, 03:28 PM
Guitarsquatch Guitarsquatch is offline
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I've been hoping they would begin a line of all solid classicals in the $500 range to match their amazing steel strings. I blame Eastman for turning me into a solid wood snob.
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Old 04-22-2021, 09:50 PM
Pura Vida Pura Vida is offline
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A belated congrats. Beautiful looking guitar. And I don't think there are many out there. Someone on EGF was just posting about trying to find one.
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Old 04-30-2021, 07:02 PM
ceciltguitar ceciltguitar is offline
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Congratulations, John, on acquiring the Eastman JB Cabaret! Iíve admired these guitars on the Internet for quite a while. Youíre right, they do appear to be rare. A Google search right now only found one for sale, and thatís in the UK.

Now that youíve been playing it for a couple months, what do you have to say about this guitar?

Is the neck as thin as the GK pro neck?

(BTW I still play the GK Pro that I bought from you a couple years ago)
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Old 05-02-2021, 09:26 AM
Red_Label Red_Label is offline
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Originally Posted by ceciltguitar View Post
Congratulations, John, on acquiring the Eastman JB Cabaret! Iíve admired these guitars on the Internet for quite a while. Youíre right, they do appear to be rare. A Google search right now only found one for sale, and thatís in the UK.

Now that youíve been playing it for a couple months, what do you have to say about this guitar?

Is the neck as thin as the GK pro neck?

(BTW I still play the GK Pro that I bought from you a couple years ago)
Hey bud! Glad you're still loving the GK Pro. I've still got my negra, which is amazing considering how much gear that tends to come and go in my man cave. Nothing else in the GK Pros price range touches them for latin stuff in my experience. Not even Cordoba's Espana line (all of which I've owned).

Back to the Eastman... I'm still loving it. In fact, last night I shaped a bleach bone saddle blank to fit the Cabaret. I take it to its minimum height to get the action as low as it's possible on this guitar. Only had about 15 minutes with it, since it was so late by the time I finished. But it's very lively, with some snap and buzz (the good kind). It's not as "flamenco" as the Cordoba flamencos. But it's still perfect for what I do, and I didn't change out the strings, so they're not new and lively. I expect I'll like it even more once I've changed them. I'm about to order some decent puckup system (probably the LR Baggs Element, Anthem, or similar). I had to remove the awesome, natural-sounding stock electronics on the Cabaret, because the pickup and saddle were one piece, so I couldn't just shave down the saddle to get my low action and buzz. So I completely removed it. It's a shame because it sounds very natural, ala the K&K Pure Classic system.

The neck is narrower than a standard classical, but there is plenty of space for fingerstyle. There is also a very slight fretboard radius. So between those two things it's very comfortable to play.

Anyways... the report card on the Cabaret is straight A honor student so far.
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Old 05-02-2021, 09:34 AM
Red_Label Red_Label is offline
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Originally Posted by Guitarsquatch View Post
I've been hoping they would begin a line of all solid classicals in the $500 range to match their amazing steel strings. I blame Eastman for turning me into a solid wood snob.
Ditto that! I want to acquire a few more Eastman instruments. Besides this Cabaret, I also have Eastman mandolin, mandola, and octave mandolins. They are awesome and I'd like to get an Eastman mandocello. I have thought about getting one or two of their steel strings, but I've got two awesome Breedlove American-made Concerto models, as well as a nice Lakewood steel string. So even though the Eastman steel strings that I've played are great, they would be outclassed by the Breedloves. Speaking of Breedlove... I've owned somewhere between 12 and fifteen of their American made guitars and mandolins and they are my favorite steel strings. I would say that for me, they are to steel strings what Cordobas are to nylons. And Eastmans are right up there for me as well.
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Old 05-02-2021, 10:15 AM
Red_Label Red_Label is offline
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Originally Posted by Pura Vida View Post
A belated congrats. Beautiful looking guitar. And I don't think there are many out there. Someone on EGF was just posting about trying to find one.
Thank you. I love having such a inique and rare instrument (import or not). But at the same time... it's a bit weird. Because even though I know how well built and great sounding this instrument is... I always ask myself why aren't there now out there. Considering its price point and a few unique features, it's probably too nice for the fairly conservative classical guitar market. I liked it from the get-go, I did find the price quite off-putting (for an import guitar). But that was before I actually educated myself on the unique features of this guitar, and the fact that it's a clone of a very limited handmade, luthier-built guitar that runs about $10K and you have to be on a waiting list to get. It's overwhelmingly UNlikely that I would have been able to own the real thing, so the fact that Eastman would build such a clone is pretty awesome.

Last edited by Red_Label; 05-05-2021 at 11:16 PM.
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Old 05-05-2021, 04:46 PM
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CCFingerstyle CCFingerstyle is offline
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I was in North Carolina today and dropped by to visit with John Buscarino at his workshop. I played the Eastman Cabaret and was very impressed with...well...everything about it. Great feel/playability, tone (plugged and unplugged), workmanship, aesthetics. I am used to fairly nice nylons...own or have owned several old 60s Martin nylons, Kirk Sands (deep body and thinline models), Paul McGill Super Ace, lots of the different Taylor nylon models, Takamine Hirades, Pono nylon, and others. This Cabaret is worth a look if you are interested in hitting the sweet spot between a true classical and a hybrid nylon. Even a nice looking case. John sets them up after they come in from the factory to make sure all is as good as it gets. Looking forward to getting it when the next batch comes in...Chris
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Old 05-05-2021, 05:29 PM
EvanB EvanB is offline
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A truly beautiful guitar!
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Old 05-05-2021, 11:15 PM
Red_Label Red_Label is offline
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Originally Posted by CCFingerstyle View Post
I was in North Carolina today and dropped by to visit with John Buscarino at his workshop. I played the Eastman Cabaret and was very impressed with...well...everything about it. Great feel/playability, tone (plugged and unplugged), workmanship, aesthetics. I am used to fairly nice nylons...own or have owned several old 60s Martin nylons, Kirk Sands (deep body and thinline models), Paul McGill Super Ace, lots of the different Taylor nylon models, Takamine Hirades, Pono nylon, and others. This Cabaret is worth a look if you are interested in hitting the sweet spot between a true classical and a hybrid nylon. Even a nice looking case. John sets them up after they come in from the factory to make sure all is as good as it gets. Looking forward to getting it when the next batch comes in...Chris
Very nice. Great info Chris! Thanks! I feel very privileged to have crossed paths with this instrument at the right time and place.
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