About Gittler

Meet the Original Gittler

The original Gittler Guitar was invented in the 1970′s by Allan Gittler and received U.S. patent 4079652. His basic approach was to subtract as many unnecessary features as possible from the traditional electric guitar. By paring the instrument down to the point of pure function, it would then become more responsive to every nuance of playing, however subtle. By doing away with not only the body but most of the neck (including the fretboard) and all volume and tone controls, he was able to work towards his finished product; a 29″ long, 3″ wide, stainless steel guitar weighing less than 5 pounds.
Allan Gittler created 60 of these guitars, as well as 3 prototype basses back in the late 1970’s and early 1980′s. So striking was the finished product that it was purchased by MOMA in New York City for their permanent collection and by Andy Summers of the Police (who played it in the Synchronicity II video). Allan Gittler then emigrated to Israel and adopted his Hebrew name, Avraham Bar Rashi. After an unsuccessful partnership and a short-lived attempt to revive the instrument, the guitar entered into the canon of iconic design and became legend. Bar Rashi passed away in 2003, leaving his children to carry on the family tradition of music and design. Yonatan, his eldest son, is now a partner in Gittler Instruments LLC as well as a brilliant percussionist and touring musician.

“Music is of the highest of arts…It deals with sound, motion, time –
and it’s invisible.”

-Allan Gittler, Musical Pioneer, Inventor, Founding Father

Gittler as Seen in Museums

THE TRUTH ABOUT ASTRON GUITARS

There is a great deal of misinformation that has made it into the public domain over the years with regard to the later production “Astron” Gittler guitars. These guitars were the result of an abortive effort to begin a larger scale production run of the original Gittler guitar. After Allan Gittler had resolved to move his family to Israel he decided to continue the fabrication of his brainchild with an Israeli machinist (allowing him to participate in a supervisory capacity). He was persuaded to enter into a contract by two unscrupulous business associates with manufacturing and distribution contacts on both continents. The contract was written in Hebrew (which Allan did not read and simply accepted on trust).

These guitars were made very poorly. The spines were distorted and the corresponding torsion caused the frets to be out of flatness. The solution that Astron Manufacturing chose to correct the problem involved pressing the portions that were out of manufacturing tolerance into thermoformed plastic body and neck parts to correct for the deviations. When Allan discovered Astron’s intent he forbade it – but his contract prevented him from legally stopping them. He demanded that his name be removed from the product (a request which was not honored for the most part) so he sent out a letter to warn potential buyers and distributors.

That letter effectively ended production of the Astron guitar.

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