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Grand Orchestra Wins 2013 Best Acoustic Guitar

Friday, February 14, 2014
By: chalise.zolezzi

In 2013, the Grand Orchestra debuted to rave reviews from media, players and the industry, and has been on an award-winning streak ever since. Most recently, at the 2014 Winter NAMM Show, the Grand Orchestra took home the award for “Best Acoustic Guitar” of 2013 from the Music and Sound Retailer magazine.  Now in its 28th year, the Music & Sound Retailer awards are given based on votes by dealers in the United States and signify the best of the best in each product class. The award is considered one of the industry’s most prestigious, and stands out as the only award based on a poll of every American dealer and manufacturer rather than being selected by an editorial board or influenced by advertising revenue.

The award comes on the heels of the Grand Orchestra being named a “Best in Show” product at the 2013 NAMM University Breakfast Session, “Best in Show – This Year’s Hottest Products.” A panel comprised of top retailers and hosted by Frank Alkyer, publisher of Music Inc. and Downbeat magazines,  selected the best products in four categories: Best Add-on Accessory, Gotta Stock It, Companies to Watch, and Best in Show. Donovan Bankhead of Springfield Music nominated the Grand Orchestra as his pick, lauding the guitar’s deep, complex sound and exceptional composition. “The Grand Orchestra blew me away with its versatility,” Bankhead later shared. “Most Jumbos are a one trick pony, but the new Taylor Grand Orchestra proved to have more dynamic versatility and superb ergonomics, while still retaining the power and volume of a traditional Jumbo.”

Also last year, the Grand Orchestra took home the Musikmesse International Press Award (MIPA) for “Best Acoustic Guitar” at the Musikmesse trade show in Frankfurt, Germany. More than 160 publications from around the world cast their votes for the top products in over 40 musical instrument categories to determine the winners. The prestigious award has been called the "Grammy" of the Musical Instrument/Pro Audio industry.

The Grand Orchestra immediately established itself as a fan favorite upon its release for its big, rich and robust voice. The guitar was inspired by a desire to revoice the Taylor Jumbo, but Taylor’s design group instead opted to start from scratch and rethink the possibilities of a modern big-bodied guitar. Taylor master luthier Andy Powers began the design process by experimenting with body dimensions. He wanted to capture some of a Dreadnought’s robust tonal personality to produce big, round, richly solid notes. Slightly longer than a traditional Dreadnought body, the Grand Orchestra features a tighter waist, a wider bottom bout, and specially designed bracing to heighten the tonal properties. The body depth was also expanded to five inches in order to increase the air volume.  Initially, the guitar was released in limited quantities as First Edition models but now can be found in the 500-900 Series models at authorized Taylor Dealers around the world. 

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