About John Moriarty
The Island of Music is very happy to have John Moriarty join our platform. John is a very accomplished Jazz musician and Irish luthier, well known for his many years of guitar making experience and for his world class quality guitars. He is a graduate of the National College Of Art And Design in Dublin where he studied Visual Communications. John’s guitar building is a culmination of his two interests – visual design and jazz music. John’s guitars have been featured at the Healdsburg International Guitar Festival 2009 in California and at the launch of the Holy Grail Guitar show in Berlin.
John has played at many Jazz events and venues including the Guinness Jazz Festival, Glasgow Jazz Festival, Euro-Jazz Festival in Mexico City, JJ Smyth’s and Vicar Street in Dublin. He has recorded and toured with U.S. pianist Bill Carrothers and performed with Bobby Watson of ‘Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers’. He has also played many guitar duets with fellow Irishman Louis Stewart. This long experience in playing Jazz reatly contirbutes to the quality of sound that his guitars produce.
John takes a practical approach to building a guitar, always refining the designs but keeping them functional. They are road-worthy, but not over-built. In his own words "I’ve learned through experimentation how to make an archtop guitar sound fully acoustic, without the familiar ‘bark’ as found on poorly voiced instruments. At the same time, I understand that most performers use magnetic pickups which can sound muddy when over-loaded with acoustic information. So more often my instruments are voiced to sound good when amplified."
When it comes to renovating instruments, John works with specific measurements and reference points. If an instrument is transformed after a setup or a repair, it is not because of a magical touch, just attention to detail and careful decision making. John's guitars are available for sale on from the Island of Music shop.