“He told me the story about how an 18-year-old senior in high school bought it new in 1924, played it in a mandolin orchestra for a year, then married his high school sweetheart.On his wedding night, he put it under his bed and never played it again. So I played it and right away I could tell it already had some of the characteristics I wanted a Loar to have.” After thinking about it for two weeks, Thile bought the mandolin.
Several years later, he bought back #5 because he liked it so much.
After playing the mandolin “as is” for a little over a week, Thile sent it to Steve Gilchrist, in Australia, for setup and minor repairs.
“The pickguard was intact, but a small piece of binding on the side of the fingerboard was missing due to shrinkage.
“I played three Loars, all of which were good, but none of them moved me,” he said.
When he returned to Glazer’s shop to pick up Dude #5, he mentioned the Gruhn visit to Glazer, who asked, “You looking?
“When I asked the signing date, White said ‘Feb 13’,” said Thile.