Saturday, June 18, 2016

Don Young - Founder and Owner of National Resophonic Instrument Passes Away at Age 63

From and the National Resophonic website

Don Young - May 8, 1953 - June 15, 2016
“The world lost a kind and generous man last night with the passing of National’s co-founder, Don Young. As a musician and resonator guitar aficionado, Don enjoyed sharing his knowledge of resonator history with friends and co-workers.  He will be greatly missed by all those lucky enough to have known him.  His trademark engineer’s cap symbolized his love of trains. Don Young is survived by his wife and three daughters."

Don Young with Engineer cap

The company National Resophonic was formed in 1989 by Young and McGregor Gaines, in a Californian garage.

Don Young and McGregor Gaines
These men measured old resonator instruments of all makes and designs, and produced reproductions under the “National” brand name and trade mark, as was originally used by the National String Instrument Corporation for the first resonator instruments.

National Resophonic Style O
In 1990 a factory was purchased in San Luis Obispo, California and is still located at this site.

Since its inception, National Reso-Phonic Guitars is a manufacturer of resonator guitars and other resonator instruments including mandolins, ukuleles and 12 string guitars.

Their current production is over 1,000 instruments per year, representing more than 50 different models.

In addition to manufacturing new instruments, they offer a repair service capable of restoring almost any vintage National guitar to original condition.

In 2008, Young and Eric Smith, an employee of the company since 1991, purchased McGregor Gaines’ interest in the company.

Young reportedly sold his interest in 2014 and retired.

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