All-tropical mahogany short scale acoustic with ivoroid binding and rosette.
Taylor's all-mahogany Grand Concert 522 yields a smooth, balanced, easygoing character that will work well for blues, country and ragtime picking, with the added playing comfort of a short-scale (24-7/8") neck. Distinctive appointments include a black pickguard, ivoroid binding and rosette, and an ivoroid Century fretboard inlay. Includes case.
The small-body Grand Concert debuted in 1984 to meet the needs of a new wave of adventurous acoustic fingerstyle players. In contrast to the traditionally darker, boomier voices of bigger body styles like dreadnoughts and jumbos, the GC's compact size and tapered waist kept the overtones in check. It was also more comfortable to play while sitting down, and the guitar's slightly wider neck gave players more room for complex fingerings.
The GC's smaller sonic footprint also fit cleanly in a mix with other instruments when tracking in the studio and with a band on stage, making it a useful tool for professional session and side players. Taylor's current generation of GC models continues to accommodate fingerstylists with finger-friendly traits like a shorter 24 7/8" scale length, which makes fretting easier and adds a slightly slinkier feel on the strings due to the lighter string tension. If you feel more comfortable with a small body or favor controlled overtones, a Grand Concert is a great option.
Mahogany is a good wood to anchor a discussion of tones, as a lot of other wood tones can be described in relation to it. Its essential sonic profile is well-represented in the midrange frequencies. Acoustic guitars in general tend to live in the midrange portion of the sound spectrum, but mahogany in particular displays a lot of midrange character. That thick, present midrange sound is sometimes described in guitar circles as meaty, organic or even "chewy" - wherever a player digs in on the fretboard, they're tapping into the core of the harmonic content of what a guitar produces. Those great midrange frequencies produce overtones that stack up and produce bloom, giving the sound extra girth. When one hears the resulting harmonics, the "chewy" tone serves up a big mouthful of midrange. As a popular tonewood for many decades, mahogany has been used on scads of old school acoustic recordings, and that sonic heritage carries across various strains of roots music, from blues to folk to slack key.
Taylor Relief Rout
Taylor's patented relief rout is a tone-enhancing voicing technique in which a groove is carved along the inside edges of the top. This groove is similar in function to the re-curve on a violin - it "loosens up" the edges of the top, generating extra flexibility without sacrificing structural integrity. The result is increased bass and volume with a balanced tone.