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Thread: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

  1. #1
    Lost my boots in transit terzinator's Avatar
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    Default The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    For my 50th Birthday, my wife said "You should get a new mandolin."

    So in November 2014, I contacted Steve to build me a tangerine-burst Sprite. Red-Spruce top, Birdseye maple back and sides, EVO frets, Waverly tuners, tortoise binding.

    A year and a half later, I received this. It was worth the wait.














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  3. #2

    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Lovely. I really like the different take on design that Sorensens have.

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    Registered User Mike Arakelian's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Congratulations...a beautiful instrument. I'll bet it sounds as good as it looks. Enjoy!
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    Registered User Tavy's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Just got to love the look of that - and the colour too - unconventional but looks just right for that design!

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  9. #5
    Registered User Steve-o's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Terzinator,

    Wow, that's a nice looking and very unique mando. What a sweet wife and birthday present. My wife also gave me one for my 50th, and oddly enough, it has Birdseye back and sides. Enjoy that Sorensen!

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  11. #6

    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Beautiful. Love Steve's 2 point desgn and this one is perfect--that birdseye is spectacular.
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    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    The orange color and tortoiseshell binding look great together, what a beauty - congratulations!
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    nice tease with the pictures Love the sprite - enjoy!

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    Kelley Mandolins Skip Kelley's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Congratulations! Steve is an awesome builder! Enjoy that mandolin!

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    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Nice. Wow. Nice.
    Indulge responsibly!

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    funny....

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  21. #11
    Loarcutus of MandoBorg DataNick's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Congrats!

    You are also likely the beneficiary of Steve's "Randy Jones inspired" voicing that he's doing these days. He's takedn Sorensen voicing to a new level...
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  23. #12
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Would you please refrain from posting photos of the gorgeous instruments, they makes get all shakey inside and I start drooling. So please stop the insanity (going on in my head).

    I like the color. Imagine mine would be an ice tea burst with tortoise binding.

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  25. #13

    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Can't believe no one's said it yet: please post a few sound clips for us!

    If your mandolin was a woman, she'd be a supermodel... But I'm more interested in what she has to say, lol!
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    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    I think I need a smoke after seeing that
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  29. #15
    Registered User trevor's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Wow! Another beauty from Steve.
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    Registered User Atlanta Mando Mike's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Stunning, just stunning. Color, shading, pickguard, shape. Very aesthetically pleasing!!!

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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Well what can I add? WOW and NEAT.

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  35. #18
    Lost my boots in transit terzinator's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Thanks, all.

    I'll try to get something recorded soon.

    I told Steve that, aside from its stunning looks, it is the best mandolin I've ever played. Now, I will admit, I've never played a Gilchrist or Nugget or Ellis. So my sample size is limited to whatever I can try up here in Minnesota. (Although I have made it to the Mandolin Store and Gruhn's, and played some fine examples of other builders there. And guys I pick with at the bluegrass fests here have some really nice mandolins.)

    Here's a quick rundown of my initial impressions, to go with the photos.

    Sound: The one word I would describe it as is: ALIVE. I love my Collings MT, and other jam buddies, who knew I was getting a Sprite, have said, "If you ever sell the MT, let me know." Where the Collings is dependable for good, solid tone, this Sprite is magical. Some kind of crazy tonal pixie dust or something. In our conversations, Steve did talk about all that he learned from working with Randy Wood, as mentioned above. Whether it actually has that "voicing" or not, or just benefits from Steve's continued mastery of his craft, I don't know. All I know is that it's special. I know Red Spruce can take some time to play in, open up and evolve, but this thing is vibrant and resonant and loud, right out the chute. If it forgets it was ever a tree, it will be scary.

    Playability: Again, my Collings has this in spades. My MT has the wider 1-3/16" nut, and I wrestled over this when ordering the Sprite. I played a Sprite at the Mandolin Store in March of 2015, and it had the standard 1-1/8" nut, which felt very comfortable, so I decided to just go with it. I am glad I did. The neck is perfect. It is definitely fuller than the Collings standard neck, so Steve's standard neck size does not feel diminutive in my hand. The action is perfect, and it responds to such an easy touch that I wouldn't be surprised if it helped my technique (not feeling like I have to try to play loud).

    Build process: Steve was great. He sent me photos and emails all along the build, asking about wood choices, and appointments, and other details. (That pickguard was one choice I had to make. Ebony? Or Birdseye to match the finish? No question it was a stroke of genius.) He was excited to do a different-colored burst. Collings does a Tangerine burst, and that was the inspiration for it. It was funny; Steve sent a few pics when the burst was initially applied, and sent them to me. The photos made it appear that it leaned to a more pink tone at the edges, and I emailed back with a slight bit of concern. He immediately called my cell and talked me off the ledge. "No pink at all. Trust me."

    It's a scary prospect, having someone build you something that you've never played, never seen, never held. Will it sound good? Will I like how it plays? Am I crazy to ask for a special-order color? Once you find the right builder, you gotta trust and let go. It'll be ok.

    I've always owned A-style mandolins, as I always felt, for me, that F-styles were too fussy. Yes, they're beautiful, but because I always wanted to put my money into the tone/playability, I figured I'd rather save my money on the looks.

    But two-points, man, to me, THEY are the perfect blend of subtlety and flair. I considered a Weber Bighorn, and Ben Wilcox's two-pointers. I even emailed Collings at one point to see if they were considering making one. But when I saw Steve's Sprite for the first time (I think it was the one on JazzMando.com), it immediately spoke to me.

    No regrets. Wouldn't change a thing. It's perfect.

    Anyhoo, glad you like the pics. I'll figure out something cool to record. (But everything sounds cool on it.)

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    hank 

  37. #19
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Not much I can add except, "Just like with a woman, looks ain`t everything"....I want to hear it speak to me...

    Glad you are so happy with it...It is beautiful....

    Willie

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  39. #20
    Lost my boots in transit terzinator's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Here's a quick shot I took outside, which really is the most accurate one, color-wise.


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  41. #21
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Wow, that's beautiful, and looks very serious from the making music side.
    I remember when you did the trip to TheMandolinStore and posted your thoughts and then ordered this up, I've been waiting on your review(huge Collings fan here also, so I wanted to hear how it worked out for you).

    Really dig that color also. Amazing looking mandolin.

    Eager to hear soundclips when you get a chance. My introduction to the Sorensen sound were the videos posted by Randy Jones after he got his-and my intro to "Southern Flavor". Had my eyes on one ever since.

    enjoy, its a great looking beast
    d

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  43. #22
    Troy Shellhamer 9lbShellhamer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Definitely agree with the consensus. Congrats. Gorgeous!
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  45. #23
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Chris, congratulations on a beautiful mandolin! I have had a chance to meet Steve and play his mandolins at the last two IBMA's here in Raleigh and was very impressed. He does beautiful inlay as well, I would love to see a close up of the headstock on your Sprite.
    Charley

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  46. #24
    Registered User spufman's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Wow, I'd say you made all the right choices, it is stunning! And if you say it sounds as good as it looks, well then...
    Blow on, man.

  47. #25
    man about town Markus's Avatar
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    Default Re: The arrival of a Sorensen Sprite.

    Happy for you, enjoy the hell out of it.

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