Veillette-Citron, 8-String Bass, 1982 - Kasim Sulton


8-String Bass
Serial Number: 
The Story Behind

Joe Veillette on the story how Veillette-Citron has emerged:

My first taste of guitar making came soon after architectural school, while working as an architectural designer in New York City. After three reputed experts couldn’t fix the broken headstock on my new first guitar, I suddenly found myself with an opportunity to learn guitar building from Michael Gurian. I figured that if I could learn to make one, I could probably fix mine. That was in 1971.

I soon lost interest in architecture & moved from Brooklyn to Grahamsville, NY, where I made acoustic guitars until mid 1975. At that time I co-founded Veillette-Citron Guitars with my friend & fellow architectural student Harvey Citron. The company did well, selling to many notable players. In 1978, John Sebastian asked us to build a baritone guitar, resulting in the VC Shark. That began my fascination with different scale lengths & string tensions, which still marks many of my designs. Veillette-Citron closed in 1983.

For the next 8 years I built very few guitars, mostly making a living as a singer/guitarist & leader of The Phantoms, which became one of the most popular bands in New York’s Hudson Valley. We performed often around New York City, in clubs from the Bottom Line & Lone Star Cafe to Radio City Music Hall. We also had strange jobs, including a regular spot on Soupy Sales’ daily NBC radio show.

In 1991, I started Woodstock Music Products with Stuart Spector, making Spector basses & starting a line of Veillette electric & baritone guitars. When we parted company in mid 1995, development began on the current line of hybrid "acoustic/electric" Veillette Guitars.

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Veillette-Citron pioneered boutique basses right along with a lot of the other NY luthiers like Fodera, Spector, Carl Thompson, etc.. and other west coast greats like Alembic. The quality is right on par with these great builders if not higher. 

This 8-string bass was built in 1982. According to Joe Veillette and Harvey Citron there were just over 500 V-C instruments made, most of which were guitars.

This bass guitar was owned by Kasim Sulton (Todd Rundgen's Utopia, Meat Loaf, ...). It can be seen in this footage of Utopia in 1982 (around 40:00):



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