Aria Guitars are quite an interesting lot of instruments. They often come in colors that you can’t find anywhere else and most things about them are unique, right down to their shape. They use Duncan pickups, custom Humbuckers and many times, Wilkinson Tremolos, all of which add to their dramatic and unique sound as well as their quality.
With a vision for setting Aria Guitars apart from the rest of the world, Shiro Arai, the company’s founder has approved many forms for his guitars, leaving the public with a great variety to choose from.
That intense amount of variety that Aria offers allows these guitars to be used by just about anyone–rockers, hard rockers, etherial musicians, goths, jazz players, metal heads, the list goes on. The PE Gothic guitar, for example, is delicately painted a satin black and is equipped with black hardware. It’s not without it’s lovely features, however, as it sports 2 Duncan Designed Humbuckers. But if you’re looking for tradition, Aria has that, too in their STG Vintage Series. These straight forward guitars feel like they are straight out of the 70s or 80s and have a decent sound and great looking body.
History of Aria guitars
The Aria line was formed in Japan by Shiro Arai in 1953. It originally began as Arai and Company while it was a retailer in acoustic guitars through the early 60s but Shiro wanted more for his name.
In 1964 the Arai Company began to manufacture their own guitars when Arai asked the famous luthier Matsumoku to build him some under contract. They started out with acoustic guitars that year and added electrics to their list just 2 years later in 66. By this time they were making guitars using the Arai, Aria, Aria Diamond and Diamond brand names and the line of Aria guitars was officially renamed Aria Pro II in 75 to squash the confusion amongst consumers. Arai’s success was almost instant and the legend moved forward from there.
Despite the usual “untuned” quality and must-replace strings that Arias display straight out of the factory wrapper, Aria guitars, especially today, are held in high regard amongst musicians. Many Aria guitars are made from solid wood and, to the pleasure of the public, they are not dipped or coated in plastic paint. Most often you will find an Aria made of solid wood that has been beautifully stained or properly coated in lustrous color.
714-CST: The 714 is an excellent example of the Aria signature stained-wood look. This beautiful piece of equipment is made of an Ash body with a Maple neck and Rosewood fretboards. It’s also 22 frets of incredibly unique sound, a Duncan Designed 102 single-coil Humbucker pickup and volume and tone control, of course. The hardware is also chrome and it sports a Wilkinson Tremolo.
SB1000RI: The SB series (Solid Body Bass) is making waves because the public has been asking for a lightweight SB for a long time. The original neck-through body is a welcome plus for this guitar and allows easy access to even the highest frets. This guitar is equipped for the average body but will make bass players with small hands very pleased. The SB is made of Ash, Maple, Walnut and Ebony. It’s 24 frets with an MB-1E double coil pickup.
DQ-NYE: Modeled after the original design of once well known luthier James D’Aquisto, this archtop electric sporting 22 frets, an original “floating” style Humbucker pickup and a volume and tone control on the pickguard. It is a beautiful, well made representation of the original.
The Aria Difference
Aria, unlike many guitar manufacturers, offers equipment of all shapes, sizes and prices. Their guitars are unique, attractive and will weather the storm when treated properly. So whether you’re looking for a guitar to begin with or you’re an accomplished musician looking for high quality, Aria makes it all. If your buds require more proof, check out the many musicians who proudly use the Aria line:
Ocean Colour Scene
Robbie Williams Band