Carvin Corporation

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Carvin Corporation
Private
Industry Musical instruments
Genre Music company
Founded 1946; 69 years ago (1946)
Founder Lowell Kiesel
Headquarters

San Diego, California
United States of America

32°59′17.38″N 117°04′10.47″W / 32.9881611°N 117.0695750°W / 32.9881611; -117.0695750
Area served
Global
Products Guitar, Bass Guitar, Amplifiers, Audio equipment
Website Carvin Corporation Website

Carvin Corporation is an American guitar, bass and audio equipment manufacturer in San Diego, California. It is one of only a few remaining family-owned companies in the industry.[1]

History[edit]

Lowell Kiesel founded Carvin in San Diego, California in 1946 as the L. C. Kiesel Company to manufacture guitar pickups. By 1947, the company was manufacturing steel guitars in Gothenburg, Nebraska. Around 1948, it returned to Southern California, and moved to Baldwin Park, California in 1949, where the company name changed to Carvin, after Kiesel's two eldest sons, Carson and Gavin. The company's current production facility occupies 82,000 square feet.[1]

Throughout the 1950s, 1960s, and early 1970s, Carvin manufactured guitars and bass guitars, largely from bodies and necks made by Höfner. During this period, they also manufactured amplifiers and steel guitars, and were authorized resellers of other gear, including Fender and Martin guitars, DeArmond pickups, and Sonola accordions.

In the late 1970s, Carvin began to produce all their own instrument components, and also expanded their product lines to include pro audio gear, recording equipment, lighting and other stage and studio equipment. Later, Carvin switched to manufacturing through-neck guitars, attracting metal players such as Jason Becker.

Starting in the 1970s, Carvin developed a niche in the musical instrument world by only selling directly to the public via mail order, In the 1980s they began to offer guitars and basses built to a customer's specifications, based on available body shapes, woods, colors, electronics and other features.

In 2015, Carvin Corporation split into two distinct companies; Kiesel Guitars, which continues to build electric and acoustic guitars, MIDI synth guitars, bass guitars and other instruments under the Carvin Guitars name as well as new, Kiesel-badged instruments; and Carvin Amplifiers/Carvin Audio, which will continue to manufacture guitar and bass amplifiers and pro audio gear. Kiesel Guitars opened up sales globally following the split, which Carvin Amplifiers/Carvin Audio continue to use a dealer network for overseas sales.


Notable users[edit]

Current and past Carvin users include: Jonathan Butler, Frank Zappa, Nicki Kin, Allan Holdsworth, Frank Gambale, Steve Vai, Brendon Small, Bunny Brunel, Craig Chaquico, Alex Lifeson, Jason Becker, Marty Friedman, Al Di Meola, Wolf Mail, Yngwie Malmsteen, Willie Nelson, Danny Elfman, Joe Walsh, Shawn Lane, Tony MacAlpine, Timothy B. Schmit, Candy Coburn, Doug Lindsey, Warren Cuccurullo,[2] Jaco Pastorius,[3] Neil Zaza, John McVie, and Earl Slick.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Moseley, Willie G. (June 2009). "The Carvin DN440T". Vintage Guitar. p. 64. 
  2. ^ http://www.carvinmuseum.com/decade/images/85-endorsers4.html
  3. ^ http://www.carvinmuseum.com/decade/images/85-endorsers5.html

External links[edit]

Media related to Carvin Corporation at Wikimedia Commons