our lineage

Our story is one of a great, classical guitar-making tradition, stretching back 150 years.


 

It starts in 1860's Madrid, in the workshop of master builder Francisco Gonzales, who takes on a 12-year-old apprentice named Jose Ramirez

Ramirez quickly excels in his craft and perfects his own technique and develops a means of efficiently producing high quality guitars. This leads to the founding of the great Ramirez guitar making dynasty. 

His son, Jose Ramirez II, is born with his father's love of the instrument. He spends his youth touring South America with his guitar. 

Returning to Spain, he too learns to build and passes his knowledge, experience, innovations and love of the art to Marcello Barbero

Soon after WWII , Barbero accepts Edgar Moench from Germany as an apprentice. 

Moench eventually moves to Canada and settles in Toronto. It's there he meets and trains a young French Canadian man, Jean Larrivée, who becomes a seminal figure in the Canadian guitar building industry. 

David Iannone circa 1983 apprenticing for Jean Larrivée.

David Iannone circa 1983 apprenticing for Jean Larrivée.

In the late 1970's, wishing to have a shop near the large Sitka spruce forests of BC, Jean moves to Victoria, where a couple years later, he meets David Iannone, who becomes his last traditional apprentice. 

In 1985, David begins to design and build his own guitars and by his own hands Morgan Guitars is born. 

 
David's firstborn and the business' namesake clutching his own creation made out of a block of cedar for guitar tops. The young Morgan added tuners and nails himself to hold the strings down. 

David's firstborn and the business' namesake clutching his own creation made out of a block of cedar for guitar tops. The young Morgan added tuners and nails himself to hold the strings down. 

He names his company after his first child, after the sleek beauty of the Morgan thoroughbred horse, true to the locale of the workshop. In Welsh, Morgan means "work by the sea." 

 
 
 

Watch Red Robinson chatting with David Iannone at Morgan Guitars in North Vancouver

 

 

OUR SHOP

Attached to his North Vancouver home, at the foot of Mount Seymour, just walking distance to Burrard Inlet, David is humbled by the fact that he is able to create each guitar in his one person work shop which, he has built from the ground up since 1985. 

To keep the hours and costs down while sustaining impeccable craftsmanship, David has dedicated years to reinventing the design of his workshop, making the process extremely efficient. After three decades, he considers it a dance where no movement is wasted. 

Over the years he has had some company–three shop dogs and one free roaming budgie. In and out whenever they pleased, his children grew up watching him work while doing their homework on the table saw top and drawing on his shop walls. 

 

 


 

our wood

The wood that David sources for each guitar comes from all over the world. From wet sorting grounds in British Columbia to mills in India, Japan, Spain and from suppliers in California. Each piece of wood is unique. Each piece of wood is old and seasoned which, tells a wise story that comes out in the guitar's sound. Morgan Guitars are built from carefully sourced wood purchased from suppliers that we personally know and trust. The wood is stored, cured and seasoned with all possible care. 

 

It's time to meet the guitars.