Weekend Fun: The “Pikasso” Commissioned by Pat Metheny

The Pikasso took 2 years to build (approximately 1000 hours), and when the 42 strings are strung up to high tension, the Pikasso is under approximately 1000 lbs pressure. It weighs 6.7 kg or 14 3/4 lbs. and was commissioned in 1984 by Pat Metheny who asked Linda Manzer to build a guitar “with as many strings as possible.”

The Pikasso has four necks, two sound holes, two access doors (one on the upper player’s side and one at the tail block) and is constructed with German Spruce top, Mahogany Necks, Ebony fingerboards. bridges, and face plates, Pau abalone decorative trim, Boxwood, Rosewood, Abalone Rosette and Brass insets for mounting on stand.

One of design elements that Manzer is most proud of is The Wedge. The Wedge is a special feature I designed specifically for this instrument. The body is tapered so that the side closest to the player is thinner than the side that rests on the players knee, thus leaning the top back towards the player for a more aerial view. This is also more comfortable under the player’s arm. This feature is available as an option on all my flattop guitars.

This instrument was outfitted with a complete state of the art piezo pickup system. (Designed and installed by Mark Herbert, Boston, MA) This included a hexaphonic pickup on the 6 string section that allowed Metheny to access his Syclavier computer system thus triggering any sound including sampled sounds. Two mounting holes on the treble side (knee side) so that the guitar can be mounted on internal brass insets attaching to a stand, leaving hands free for playing or viewing.

More information on the Pikasso Guitar

Author: FutureMusic

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