Welcome to the world of Cigar Box Guitars! Joe Caruso is my name and I hand build instruments from cigar boxes. And just for fun, I have also built with cookie tin boxes and craft boxes. I have been fortunate to sell guitars to experienced musicians who have requested custom orders. But, my guitars are also in the hands of people who never, ever expected to be able to play anything. And they are now easily playing rock, blues, and popular songs. This is a humbling and heart warming experience for me – I have enabled people to play and enjoy music even more!
Come again – Easy to Play?
If you can pinch your thumb and pointing finger together, and poke with your fingers, you can play a Cigar Box Guitar (CBG). Easy to play starting chords are provided in the booklet that comes with each of guitar, plus links to sites which provide free sheet music for many songs. Click here for more info.
Here are thumbnails of the instruments I have built. Those that are available and for sale are shown with a price. Click on the name of each model, which is highlighted as a link, to see more photos and details about that specific guitar. This section will be updated as new instruments are built.
3 String Guitars
4 String Tenor Guitars
Cigar Box Ukuleles
Famous Musicians Play Cigar Box Guitars
Paul McCartney …. B. B. King…. and a few others. Yes, for real. Serious professional musicians also play these guitars. Here are links to photos with our celebrity musicians and their cigar box guitars.
Oh yes, I really really would like to post the photos but darn! due to copyright restrictions, i can only post the links without getting hassled.
A little more about Joe
Once upon a time, I worked as a project management consultant for Fortune 100 International, Canadian and US companies. I was researching electric guitar kits in 2012 and discovered the world of Cigar Box Guitars (CBGs). It seemed worthwhile to get experience building a guitar from scratch before tackling a serious kit. But I got hooked on CBGs and here I am, still building, selling a few, and watching the faces of novices light up as they learn to play their CBG.
Here’s how I got hooked. The sound of my first build, “Jenny”, was amazing, even without amplification. It had great volume and sustain. More CBGs followed, a few didley bows (one string cigar box guitars) and then the cigar box ukulele. Yes, I have drifted from project management, but the professional discipline has not been lost – I work to build precision CBGs, so they sound great, as efficiently and as cost effective as possible, and have fun doing it.
To learn a bit more about CBGs, there is a video I produced which explains the history and the building of cigar box guitars – “Building Cigar Box Guitars” It was entered into a “What Is Your Unique Hobby?” contest for Toronto’s Vision TV and won first prize.
Follow us on Instagram – cbg4ever_joe_caruso
You will find short videos and photos that show how different components and stages of guitar building, and of course the finished product.
Follow us on YouTube – “cbg4ever Joe Caruso Guitars”
There are a number of videos showing my instruments being played.
Thanks for dropping by and visiting my website. If you have any questions or comments, email me from the ‘Contact’ menu selection. Have a great day!