View Full Version : New Forster Session King Tenor

Dec-22-2016, 1:00pm
I've been wanting a tenor guitar that can hold its own alongside other instruments in an acoustic, unamplified setting. I have a loud, sort of strident 1938 Capital (Gibson "B" brand) archtop that cuts through a jam nicely. While it has an cool, edgy voice that works well in many settings, I really do enjoy the sweet voice of a flat top tenor. I've tried a number of them, from a Martin 0-17T to an old Regal, and a Goya and a Kay, and they all lacked the power I was looking for: Strong, sweet, and rich.

Last March, I decided to see if Nigel Forster would build me one of his Session King tenors. I ended up choosing a standard model with a cedrela top and mahogany back, sides, and neck. While I was already comfortable with a 23" scale, this guitar has a 24 1/2" scale. It's set up for octave mandolin tuning: GDAE. It arrived at the end of October. Here it is:


That's my friend Kent playing his banjo. Kent and I have been teaching at the same school for 24 years and have been picking together the whole time. The tenor guitar and the banjo sound fabulous together. The Session King holds its own easily with the banjo. In fact, while we were picking yesterday I had to hold back while playing backup as the tenor was overpowering the banjo. I've been thinking about what to compare the power of this guitar to. While playing two-finger backup chords, it's a bit like shooting a shotgun. The chords boom out with surprising authority. So, there's a learning curve to it. It's refreshing to play a tenor with power to spare. I wanted to say more, but my freshmen are walking in...

Thanks for reading!

Dec-22-2016, 1:36pm
Looks nice. I'd like to hear it.
What is cedrela?

Dec-22-2016, 2:17pm
Looks nice. I'd like to hear it.
What is cedrela?

Cedrela is what they make the necks of good Spanish guitars with - it's somewhere between a softwood and a hardwood. Perfect for the sound I want from a tenor. This is the guitar:


Hopefully Steve will make a video with his pal.


Dec-22-2016, 3:32pm
Lovely sounding. Thanks for posting this.

Dec-22-2016, 6:20pm
I would love to hear it alongside the banjo too :)

Dec-22-2016, 8:14pm
Me too. C'mon Steve, beat that banjo into submission! !!!!


Dec-22-2016, 9:09pm
Awright, I'll see if I can find him, but after that last session he's somewhere hiding in shame. Look at the photo; you can see the irritation on his face!