Monteleone Radio Flyer

John Monteleone’s combination of artistic imagination and traditional design, exemplified by his Radio Flyer model, brought him to prominence as one of the leading lights of the new wave of archtop guitar builders in the 1990s.

Based now in Islip on New York’s Long Island, Monteleone was intially known for his mandolins. After starting with copies of Gibson’s F-5 in 1974, he quickly developed a more modern adaptation of that traditional style, which he called the Grand Artist. Monteleone made his first guitars in the late 1970s, and the large, elliptical soundholes of his flat-top Hexaphone and archtop Eclipse models were a sign of more non-traditional designs to come.

When he turned his full attention to archtop guitars in the early 1990s, he introduced the elegant Radio Flyer, the mandolin-inspired scroll-body Grand Artist and the Art Deco-influenced Radio City. These three, along with the Eclipse, set the industry standard for sophisticated, unified aesthetics, and they make up Monteleone’s current lineup of standard models.