History of CSR Musical Instruments
Roger Kitchens comes from a long history of music. His father was a professional mandolin player who started playing
in the 1940's. His uncle played drums professionally for many years. His brother and cousin are both drummers. His daughter plays piano and guitar. Roger grew up with instruments all around him and he has played the guitar since the late 70's. His love for music is almost matched by his love of woodworking. He began woodworking projects shortly after his marriage in 1983, and has built several pieces of furniture for clients over the years. In 1996 he decided to pursue his
real dream and build his first archtop guitar -no small undertaking. His wife Sherrie and daughter Courtney were the inspiration for the name which is interwoven into the logo. They have had a tremendous influence in many decisions about the instruments. Courtney has always loved working with her hands and does custom inlay work.
When Roger placed his first order for instrument grade wood, to build his first
archtop the supplier encouraged him to order a lower quality of wood because in
his words, "the first one will be a piece of junk". Quite the opposite, Roger still loves
and plays this instrument today. In fact he showed the guitar to a local guitar icon
"Roger Boudleax Allen" the day after he set it up, and Boudleaux played it in a
restaurant that very night! Shortly thereafter Boudleaux placed an order and has
purchased 2 guitars. The next week he showed the guitar to his former guitar
instructor "Danny Smith" -an outstanding guitarist and a long time college music
instructor who plays and teaches classical, jazz, and just about any style imaginable.
Danny also placed and order soon after, and still loves his guitar after many years of playing.
Roger says that the first thing people seem to notice when they play his archtops is the neck.
Rather than sticking to the traditional "chunky" neck you often find on an archtop, and which
publications he had read encouraged, he decided to copy the slimmer, faster, neck dimentions of a modern
electric solidbody that he owned and really enjoyed playing. Mixing modern feel and playability with traditional
styling and hand built quality has produced an archtop that people love to play.
Though not really a bass player himself...although he loves to try. He built a carved archtop bass for a player in Macon, Ga. He later became aquainted with an individual in N.Y. who asked him about building a 5 string jazz style bass. A daunting task especially considering that the person owned 2 upright basses as well as some high end solid electric basses. He tackled the job, and built a bass that the friend fell in love with. He has since built a 2nd bass for this person, and the two have become great friends. Thus began CSR's custom bass building. We build basses according to individual specs. We also have basses in Atlanta Bass Gallery which is well known nationally.
Who knows where we will venture in the future. Whatever we're building, we take great pride in our instruments -adding custom features that you won't find on instruments costing far more. For example: our custom bridge covers and knobs on our basses -they just seem unfinished without it.
A custom instrument ... there's nothing quite like it. When you're ready, let us build you the instrument you'll enjoy for a lifetime!