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History of Mr Bradley Clark

Clark has been attributed to the modernization of guitar making in Australia and has been resident in China since mid-2010.
 
Joining Maton in 1990, and being quickly promoted to Factory Manager, he created that company’s own pickups and preamps, which was an immediate revenue stream, providing Maton independence and product differentiation.  Prior to joining Maton, Brad Clark had created drum pickup transducers.
 
Clark said that ‘working with Tommy Emmanuel and many other pros was valuable experience and Maton very much needed preamps.’   
 
 ‘I also had empathy for wood, process and machines… I enjoyed rebuilding spindle molders and making efficient safe jigging…and rebuilding the company.’
 
In the mid-90s he went on to convert numerous wood machining processes to computer numeric routing: Safe, accurate repeatable quality.
 
Also introducing climate control and best practice in numerous areas:  ‘For fine wood products, climate control is essential’
 
Clark grew the company’s production and revenues 6 fold between 1993 and 98 and was accordingly promoted to the position of CEO.
 
Since the Company’s family owners wished to resume control, Clark left to form Cole Clark Guitars in 2001.
 
An admirer of the Spanish method of the construction of guitars, he followed many of its principles, while manufacturing the components and the jigging utilising computer numeric routers.  It was referred to as an associative process, much influenced by automotive.

Brad Clark became great friends with the late great Spanish luthier Mr Toni Aparicio visiting the factory on numerous occasions,.
 
‘He, his ability, culture and factory were of considerable influence…and he is much missed’
 
‘I used Italian 5-Axis Cosmec CNC routers and Toni used a 5-Axis Bacci.  In many ways we were taking a similar approach.  I became extremely CAD, CAM and manufacturing literate.’
 
Brad Clark was responsible for designs including logos that characterized Cole Clark, referring back to American deco designs, of which his is an admirer.
 
‘I was less influence by Maton than New York Deco.    We all borrow, and I would like to think I did it well.’
 
He was the conceptual designer of the 2003 patented preamplifier: two sensors inputted and ‘crossed over at 350Hz’, so that the bottom end arose from the bridge, while the top end was able to be taken from a soundboard sensor and or the bridge adjusted by means of a dual gang slide potentiometer.  It was a very successful inventive step, strongly differentiating Cole Clark’s products.
 
Later Clark added a microphone that sensed top end frequencies, referring to it as the ‘3-Way crossed over’.  ‘I took only the top end from the mic…’
 
Numerous companies have imitated or borrowed the inventive step of ‘crossing over at 350Hz’.  
 
The history of faithfully amplifying the performance of stringed musical instruments continues.
 
Clark was also the discoverer of Bunya, as a luthier, soundboard wood.   He pioneered not only the use of Australian timber in the creation of guitars, but the use of reforested and plantation timbers, considering that although it was a small environmental contribution, it was no less an important one.
  
A group of investors wished to take control of Cole Clark Guitars and so Brad Clark relocated to China in mid 2010 to pursue other business.
  
‘China is culturally diverse, rich, including in its manufacturing and business opportunities..’
 
‘I love the markets of China… the factories. It is such a productive culture.  It and a lot of hard work have allowed me to finesse my designs, products and prices and approach a world market… there are few limitations…and I have achieved considerable support… It has not been my effort alone.  I work with physicists, electronics engineers as well as numerous musicians.  And I very much appreciate their input’.

 ‘I have also returned to being professional musician … for one reason to improve my ideas and products… to test and baptize them in difficult conditions…from the streets of the extraordinary ancient walled city of Dali in the West… to the bars of Lijiang and Guangzhou…’  ‘I thank my Chinese friends… especially the Grass Sea (public wechat: RVANDMUSIC), who is an awesome guitar player…’
 
 ‘I have travelled to the spice trail to the West, basked on a 400 year old bridge…had minority nation Chinese people dancing around a camp fire to Rock n Roll they’d never heard before’.  ‘And drunk the strongest baijiu (distilled alcohol from potatoes) with the Tibetans…’
 
‘I know my technology works because it has been well tested.’
  
‘Liaising with factories to achieve price performance, reliability and supply of products and components is a business art…’ He commented.  ‘Often difficult, more often enjoyable… in achieving outcomes’

‘And we have achieved outcomes.’


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