Bill Collings

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Following the very sad news of the passing of Bill Collings, here are some personal thoughts from Doug Chandler (Guitar XS Ltd) in respect of the industry legend

Bill Collings passed away on the evening of Friday, 14th July, surrounded by his family. He had been suffering from cancer of the liver for some months but had remained active at work until a few days before his death.

Powerful tributes have poured into the workshops in Austin, Texas, and into our mailbox here in the UK, from fellow instrument builders, dealers and musicians, all acknowledging the passing of one of the finest guitar builders of the modern age.

Here are a few remarks that sum up our feelings about Bill and the legacy for Collings going forward:

“We have enjoyed a wonderful 15 year personal and professional relationship with Bill and, like all “larger than life” characters, his absence will leave a big hole in our lives.

The guitar building community has long had unanimous respect and admiration for Bill’s technical prowess and his totally uncompromising standards. Tina and I know first hand that these standards extended into his personal friendships. 

Bill’s direct manner could take you by surprise. He didn’t suffer fools gladly, in fact he didn’t suffer them at all, but if he liked you you really knew it. Tina and I are the richer for having had him as a friend”.

Going forward Collings Guitars will remain in the ownership of the Collings family with day to day management the responsibility of a small team of longstanding employees headed by General Manager Steve McCreary. They remain committed to continuing to making beautiful guitars the way Bill intended. As Steve remarked at the weekend, “We will carry on his work, by following in the footsteps he left us”.

“The world won’t see his like again..”