It’s nice to find guitar builders producing hand-made guitars that are more than a rehash of familiar models, while using traditional hand tools.
Meet Jonathan Postal, whose single-cutaway Delta Zephyr has a chambered body of African mahogany, with a 0.25″ hand-stained flame maple top finished in nitro. The feel is slightly rough to the touch and does not look as if it was cranked out of a big factory. Similarly, the sound holes have a look, but it’s all part of Postal’s philosophy – build guitars that look and feel as if they were hand-built and can be played without reservation.
Our tester Delta Zephyr felt extremely durable. It was also well-balanced and felt great strapped on, giving a sense of confidence in its ability to get any job done. The C-shaped neck was pleasantly chunky, and the rosewood fretboard had expertly finished medium-jumbo frets. The tilt-back scroll headstock is a patented Postal design with a clever glued-on logo in the form of a postage stamp. Locking tuners are standard.
Plugged into a vintage tube amp, the Delta Zephyr spoke with authority across a spectrum of styles; it excelled at blues, rock, country, pop, Americana, and even jazzy chordal work, but also easily handled overdrive and distortion.
The guitar’s brass hardware is stunning – the control plate is a classic Art Deco design, and the classy pickguard is brass salvaged from the old Memphis train station. A Schaller roller bridge, gold Bigsby, and Duncan Pearly Gates pickups completed the package. In short, the Delta Zephyr is a perfectly imperfect guitar one could grow to treasure without hesitation.
This article originally appeared in VG’s December 2021 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.