Luthier Profile: Eric Schoenberg

Eric has been involved in guitars since 1959 and is widely regarded as one of the great ragtime & fingerstyle guitarists of our time. When it came time to choose a career, it was guitar, because it was an area in which he excelled! Guitar playing was a family affair for Eric. Beginning in 1963, he started teaching, which continued till just a couple of years ago.

In the late 60s he became the second half of a duo with his cousin, Dave Laibman, helping Dave perform his amazing, groundbreaking arrangements of classical ragtime. This resulted in their album, Contemporary Ragtime Guitar, on Folkways Records.

In the early 70s he started performing, touring the US & Europe playing his highly-regarded solo fingerstyle guitar, playing the classical rags, folk music, blues, country, Beatles, etc. He has written a book, Fingerpicking Beatles, released two solo albums, Acoustic Guitar and Steel Strings, on Rounder Records, a duet CD, Late Night Conversations with Richard Scholtz, on Live Music Recordings, and several contributions to anthologies.

Eric's contributions to guitar building are legendary. His love and knowledge of what made Pre-War OM-28's such great instruments put Eric in the unique position of being able to create a modern OM-28. His "Schoenberg Soloist" was and is that guitar. It was one of the first modern OM's to offer a soft cutaway. If you have never had the pleasure of playing one of Eric's guitars, you will not believe the tone, volume and projection that they produce.

Eric's genius is in his designs that are truly timeless. Over the years, he has collaborated with luthiers such as Julius Borges and T.J. Thompson to build guitars to his specifications. Schoenberg guitars offers a wide range of high-quality guitars. Custom orders are a specialty.

An explanation of the Schoenberg model names: Soloist is the 14-fret body; Standard is the 12-fret model. Both come in 00 or 000 size, with or without cutaway, and in various tonewood combinations. The AR is our version of a particular outstanding vintage guitar, the Gibson Advanced Jumbo.

To view some of Eric's guitars, please click here.

To read a review of one of Eric's guitars, please click here.

To hear sound samples of Eric's guitars, please click (1), (2) or (3).

Frederich may be reached at Eric Schoenberg Guitars,106 Main Street, Tiburon, CA 94920. Tel: (415) 789-0846. URL: