Testimonials from satisfied customers



I spent a lot of time with the new instruments last night. It was a great experience. Everything showed up safe and sound, and it was a treat to open one case after the other and see the spectacular job you did on each. They are wonderful to look at and wonderful to play. We are close to completion of our current project and should begin work on the next one around the end of this year. I promise you—the new instruments will get a good workout. I can’t thank you enough. Best,

Rich Shapero – San Mateo, CA


Hey Mark,

Just wanted to drop you a note and say hello after all of these years. Still have the beautiful guitar you built for me back in 93' n pristine condition. Have a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New year!

Take Care,

David Alan Grier


Hi Mark,

I'm still enjoying the archtop you made for me about 3 years ago. It's aging very well indeed. I'm now looking for something with lots of sustain and crunch for some nice rock/blues work. I'd like to place an order for one of your artist models, with a nice dark crimson burst finish.  I have a few custom ideas I'd like to run by you as well, but I'll save these for another email.



The guitar arrived yesterday...gorgeous! Thanks for another work of art.

Iain Melville - Beijing



I have owned a Mark Lacey Imperial since January of 1992. It was Marks' third archtop, though his first 18 inch model. Before that I had travelled around trying other guitars including a trip to the Texas guitar show. But it was marks guitar I decided to purchase. It had that warm balanced acoustic sound I was looking, which Mark said at the time, 'will only get better with age' and he was right in that. As it ages it’s sounding increasingly piano like and it is to me the perfect instrument for chord melody. The only other guitar I have played that possessed this rare 'piano' quality is the D'Angelico owned by Ron Anthony who worked with George Shearing and Frank Sinatra. I have other high end guitars, for example a Gibson Citation, a 34 D'Angelico, a wonderful Gibson Super V prototype, and a James Hutchins L5, but Marks guitar can hold its own with any of them, its sound and overall balance is spot on.

Mike Hobbs


Hi Mark!

I picked up the guitar after work. It's so beautiful!  Fit and finish is superb, and it feels really terrific. I think I got all the specs just right, and of course they were expertly implemented.  I’m really enjoying the sound, very traditional type of sound, but with great sensitivity and intimacy. I could not be more pleased at this point.  I'm sure as it opens up, it will just get better too... talk to you soon, and thanks.

Mark Block – Venice, CA



You are amazing. I cannot believe it is the same guitar. I had no idea you would be able to get it back 100%. Plays fantastic. I am really blown away and it proves you are the best.

Ron Wyse – Seattle, WA



The Classic Burst arrived on time today.  To say I am happy with it would be a great understatement.  It sounds awesome (from Billy Gibbons pinch harmonics, to Larry Carlton 335, to my favorite jazz standards).  It is pretty much the guitar I always wanted, body lighter and a little thinner than a Les Paul, but not as bulky as a 335, the ebony tailpiece and archtop style bridge, the classic jazz headstock (I have always loved the look of the D'Angelico headstock) and a fast neck with very little taper as you go up the neck (for me the taper, or lack thereof, of the neck is the most important aspect of how a guitar feels).  And it must have had a kind trip because the set-up is perfect, tuned it up and it was ready to go.  Thanks so much for all your time and effort, know that it brings great joy to many.

Kelly Webb – Irvine, CA



I previously purchased an Argonaut, in large measure based upon the recommendation of Howard Alden.  Recently, I had the opportunity to purchase an 18” Bay City, serial number 0084, from a guitar store on the West Coast.  As with some of your guitars the late Jeffery Meyer owned it previously.  While I thought that an 18” guitar would be way too large for me to play, given the lightness of the instrument and the way it is crafted, I have no problems whatsoever.  While I have a number of high-end archtop guitars, there is simply nothing like the Bay City.  The sound is simply wonderful, and the build quality is amazing.  Indeed, with the exception of the Argonaut and one other custom guitar, I am in the process of selling most of my guitars.  What is the point in having a number of guitars, when I always want to play yours.  While I do not deserve this guitar from a playing ability point of view, I am certainly glad that I purchased it.

Richard Sullivan – MA


Hi Mark,

Every one said the guitar sounds great here. I have to tell you it's the guitar of my life, no doubt. Even if I wish I had other types; nylon, folk etc etc etc, I know this one would remain the very special one. For now, it's the only guitar I've played since I got it it's that simple! I love her so much. It was made for me, I could not have had better if I asked, and it was designed right for me

Fabian Daurat - Paris


Hi Mark,

I've just received my instrument.

I'm currently at work so I can't plug it on but my first word is: what a beauty!

It looks really great, sober and elegant. I knew that I couldn't be disappointed with you but on the aesthetic side the result is more than I expected. I will email you back when I'm able to play it.

I don't have to tell you that I spent most of my time on it this week, showing it proudly to all my friends and family. I'm more than satisfied about the result. The guitar sounds wonderful, very well balanced, a deep and clear sound. The resonance is quite impressive considering the small size of the body. It sounds much like an acoustic guitar and it's just what I wanted. Playing just a chord is a real pleasure. The neck is fine, very comfortable. It's a real pleasure to play. I'm so glad I set you the building of my archtop. I couldn't be more satisfied it's perfect. It cost me a lot but it is worth it, I have no regrets. I would like to thank you for your great work and building me this dreamlike instrument. 

Luc Lelievre - Paris