Teye, born as Teije Wijnterp, is a Dutch guitarist, best known for his flamenco guitar work with the Joe Ely band between 1994 and 2000. After his musical career, Teye began building exclusive handmade guitars.
Teye started learning guitar in 1968 and moved to London to pursue a musical career, unsuccessfully. He returned to the Netherlands and played in a number of rock and roll bands, after which he studied classical guitar at the conservatory in Groningen.
Starting in the early 1980's, he begins learning to play flamenco music in Andalusia and spent the next six years alternately studying in Spain, and studying and performing in the Netherlands and the United States. Teye produces a solo flamenco guitar LP, El Gitano Punky (1988), and studies modern music at the conservatory in Rotterdam from 1990 to 1994. A visit to Austin, Texas, brought him in contact with Joe Ely, who integrated Teye’s flamenco guitar into his country-rock band on the 1995 release Letter to Laredo. Teye moved from Sevilla, where he had been living with his soon-to-be wife Belen Oliva Bermudez (a flamenco dancer), to Austin.
In 1996, then living in Austin, Teye and Belen got married and started a flamenco ensemble in Austin, Teye & Viva El Flamenco, later called Teye & Belen, releasing a CD in 1999, Viva el Flamenco and one in 2004, "FlamencObsesionArte". He worked with Joe Ely again in 1998, on Twistin' in the Wind.
Teye has in the meantime established himself as a builder of electric guitars. Befriended with Tony Zemaitis, he also often equipped his guitars with etched aluminum plates on the top, achieving "stunning looks". His Electric Gypsy La Llama was praised by Guitar Player as a "dazzling piece of guitar artistry." An unusual feature on some of Teye's guitars is a "mood" knob, which to a Guitar Player reviewer sounded as a mid-cut control, and "exponentially" increased the number of tones available.
Teye™ guitars are hand made in Austin, Texas. All series are made from scratch in Teye’s workshop featuring the same construction, wood, tuners, and all guitars come with the Teye™-shaped pickup rings, and with a Teye™-bridge and -tailpiece.
The Master-Series represents the ultimate expression of Teye’s craftsmanship and guitar-building philosophy. The Master-Series guitars are made by Teye from start to finish. He employs a labor intensive finish technique and goes so far as to hand-make his own bridge, tail-piece, and unitary pickup ring, to achieve the ultimate in sonic focus and clarity of this guitar design. The Teye Master instruments are befitting a Maharadja, a Sultan, a King. These represent the ultimate in Teye’s guitar construction, and they reside at the top of the boutique guitar market.
Teye Master-series guitars and basses are widely acclaimed and they routinely win direct A/B comparisons with the most prized vintage instruments. Their presence as exquisite works of Art and Old-World craftsmanship is obvious at a single glance.
Only eight of the Teye Master guitars are available each year. The ultimate exclusivity for the discerning player and collector.
The Artisan-Series are just like Teye’s Master guitars totally hand-engraved, for a luster and opulence that far surpasses any mechanically reproduced engraving. The Artisan guitars are hand-engraved by Teye’s understudies, under his close supervision and according to his designs.
The Standard-Series is a fully hand-made boutique guitar, beautifully adorned, with the infamous full all-passive Teye™-electronics. They share the heritage and vision of the more expensive A-Series, along with many components such as the exact same Lollar pickups and electronics panel.
Teye™ Guitars is not a company that shies away from extravagence. Their guitars are artful creations, as much masterpieces as the songs they've been used to write and perform. Featuring opulent engravings, fine-tuned electronics, semiprecious stones, and dizzying designs, Teye guitars are more than aesthetically pleasing - they're designed to sound just as good as they look.
If you want to stand out in a crowd, Teye will have the guitar for you.