Wood and Tone
The Richest Tones
You can't make an exceptional instrument from indifferent-sounding materials, which is why wood - the original miracle fiber - is at the heart of every Parker Guitar.
Basswood is lightweight, stiff, and stable, which is why we use it for the necks of many Parker Guitars, as well as for the body of our Custom Shop Hardtail model, in which it really demonstrates its terrifying low-end response. Combined with our patented epoxy carbon/glass-fiber coating, the wood becomes supercharged, adding even more power to the music.
Revered for a smoldering tone and an acoustical range that extends all the way from deep octaves to a singing upper register, mahogany is also valued for its color, grain, stability, and high-strength/low-weight ratio. We use mahogany for the bodies of the Fly Classic, the new Fly Mojo, Nite Fly-M, as well as the necks of our Nite Fly-SA and Fly Bass models.
West Coast big leaf maple is the softest and lightest of the maple family, with a wood grain that resembles waves. Visually, the curly pattern is breathtaking. Acoustically, the wavy fibers reduce the long grain stiffness and vibrate more freely - the secret to the bright, clear, powerful sound. The Fly Supreme is the only solid-body guitar with a body made entirely of curly maple.
This strong, dense, yet lightweight hardwood is unusually resonant, creating a tone that starts easily and sings out. We select only those grades of poplar with excellent silk to ensure an exceptionally crisp sound, often described as "spirited" and "bouncy" - even "funky." Our poplar guitars are ideal choices for players who favor single-coil snap and clean work.
Our spruce-bodied models are the only electric guitars made from vertical-grain Sitka spruce, a fact we think is remarkable, since spruce produces such a rippin', ferocious sound. Springy and stiff, it has the very best strength-to-weight ratio. If your style demands a wide, dynamic response and robust, meaty sound, this is your tone wood.
Swamp ash is famous for its mid-range snarl and biting response. Only a few microclimates on the American Gulf coast provide the right conditions for this tree, which grows partly underwater - and it's the soggy parts we value. Season after season under water leaches out the minerals, lightening the wood and increasing its stiffness for a sound that's swampy and spicy.