The late Ed Roman (1950 - 2011) was quite the unique individual, particularly in the world of guitars. He had a long history in this industry. His passion and energy for this business was both unparalleled and rarely seen in the world of guitars. Ed was dramatic and had a flare for showmanship, but he always backed up his beliefs with what he felt was the best way to do something, despite what others may have thought. He always had so many ideas. Before one idea came to fruition he would have two others and already modified the first. It could be frustrating working with him when he was in that mode, but you couldn't deny his excitement for turning things around in ways that were not part of the status quot. That was one of his strengths, to not limit his creations by what is "industry standard" especially if that standard meant perpetuating outdated thinking. Always "building a better mouse trap" when at all possible. While he wasn't afraid to try new ideas, he also wasn't afraid of respecting old ones, when they worked...but whether discovered or not, he did believe that there always were alternatives.
Looking back at some of the business deals Ed made throughout the years is quite something. Like the obtaining of the contents of the Steinberger USA Newburgh, New York factory from Gibson. The purchasing of the Class Axe era BC Rich bodies, necks, cores, etc. Purchases from Kramer and Jackson among many others. He was not afraid to invest, to take a chance, because he believed in his craft and in his ability to make things work, when others could not see the diamonds in the rough. He gave attention, support and room in his showrooms for up and coming builders in addition to developing his own custom build lines. The Ed Roman Guitar shops were never quite the same as your local music store or your large chain store. There was always something different and if you didn't see what you were looking for, then perhaps, together we could find it or better yet create it.
Now, here we are, Ed Roman's legacy is simply Roman Guitars. A place where we can express a level of individuality in a world of mass production. Gone may be some of the more controversial aspects of the man, but the positive aspects and free thinking, coupled with flexibility and artistic endeavor live on. Ultimately, we are here for our clients, to try our best to work with them in a positive fashion, be it in a brand purchase, custom creation or manufacturing capacity.
The old Roman website will stay active as a historical site, but will no longer be updated. It is an old site, one of the first of it's kind on the internet, written in by today's standards, what could be called an "ancient code". There are several reasons for this and remembering one's history to better improve the future would certainly be one of them.