The Loar Introduces Grassroots Series
By The Music Link, Inc.
January 28, 2014 - 9:15 pm
The Loar Grassroots Series LM-370-VSM
Hayward, Calif. — The Loar introduces the Grassroots Series — two all-new mandolins for 2014 that are carefully crafted to deliver high-end sound in a low-key package.
Both models were announced and on display at this past week's NAMM Show in Anaheim, California.
Grassroots Series mandolins are available in traditional A- and F-style body shapes, and are based on classic Golden Era designs and given a modern touch by eliminating the fretboard extension and finishing in vintage sunburst matte.
Tops are hand-carved spruce to optimize each instrument's individual character, and the thin "V" profile of the maple neck fits comfortably in the player's hand.
Removal of the fretboard extension beyond the 20th fret allows for easy strumming without the classic problem of getting hung up on the extended upper frets.
Grassroots Series mandolins are finished with Grover tuners, D'Addario strings and our unique "Harp" headstock logo.
The Loar Grassroots Series mandolins start at a street price of $299.99 and come with The Loar's industry-leading lifetime warranty.
- The Loar LM-370-VSM
- The Loar LM-170-VSM
- The Loar web site
- The Loar on Facebook
- The Loar on Twitter
- The Loar YouTube Channel
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Stuff like this a dream come true for (literally) poor MAS sufferers. The name still sucks, I'll concede to that.
I agree with your main point 100 precent. It is a great thing to have affordable instruments out there. But why one of these with laminate back and sides when, for the same money, one could buy, say, a Kentucky KM 150 which has solid carved wood all around? Maybe just to get that really cool harp "inlay". If they (the Loar or its parent company) really wanted to get affordable instruments into player's hands why not leave off the binding and headstock ornaments and put the money into solid woods instead? I will give them this much- these instruments are aimed right at their target market. I would say the target market is people who buy an instrument based more on its looks than on its sound, playability, or woods.
[QUOTE]There are a lot of newbies there asking the perennial question of 'what mandolin should I buy?' What most of them want is the f style with all the bling for an entry level price. The Loar has heard their cry and is delivering. End Quote
JH, I believe that you and I are saying pretty much the same thing. These legions of newbies here who ask about a good beginning mandolin and say they want an F style are just about always advised that they will get a better quality mandolin with better wood, workmanship, and tone for half the price if they get an A style. If I had a nickel for every time they reply "Yeah, I know, I know, but I REALLY like the way an F style looks!" I'd be rich. Call me old fashioned, but I always thought music was all about how you sound, not how your instrument looks. But you are right. The Loar has heard the cries and are delivering are delivering what they believe the masses want. And it just adds up to dollar signs for them.
A note: beware buying this from Amazon or online. The hardshell case is $150 option (which you will need) and the price quoted online does NOT include the case. Online sites list the instrument ~$400, with a case at $150 and a $50 setup, it is more like $600. I paid around that at a local shop in Littleton MA. That said, this instrument is wonderful- well intonated, easy to play, with a nice tap-tuned resonance and voice. I would have preferred a gloss finish, but that's because a like shiny things. Great mando.
btw, my screen name is wishful thinking- I got into playing mando in the hopes of building them soon. I cut my shop teeth on guitar building...
This is my first post as I have been playing mandolin now for almost two weeks! I have a LM-370 I purchased new for 275.00 including shipping. I bought a little phitz gig bag for it and it came with a cheap pickup installed. I have played guitar for fifty years and decided to pull myself out of a rut and try something completely new so I got this mando. It came setup pretty good and I was able to get a tune or two out of it the first day. Build quality is OK for my playing level and it sounds OK for now. If I get into mandolins like I'm thinking I will, I'll upgrade to maybe an Eastman later. So far I am satisified with my purchase and I have been able to eq a pretty good tone through a pa. Damn, these things are tuff on the fingertips!:redface: