The American Octofone Guitar 8-string instrument, which was first introduced in 1928 by the Regal Musical Instrument Company, could have vanished from the music scene when the company closed in 1955. However, during the mid 1930's Doc Bochenek's father, a musical missionary, was intrigued by the Octofone guitar when he heard it played by a Salvation Army street band on a south side Chicago corner. He inquired about the origin of the Octofone Guitar and discovered the factory was close by. He purchased and began using the instrument in his church performances.
Some years later, Doc joined his father’s performances and traveled through out the US, Europe, and Eastern Europe. Like his father, Doc enjoyed playing the Octofone guitar and began featuring it in his performances at concerts and festivals.
After serving in the USAF during the Vietnam era, Doc was discharged in 1972, and began dreaming of the possibility of manufacturing the magical instrument for other musicians to enjoy. During the next two years Doc was the Western Sales Representative for Moog Synthesizers and in 1976 registered "Octofone" as his brand name. He searched for a manufacturer to redevelop the vintage instrument to his specifications after playing it for years. This search lasted nearly 36 years, yet he kept his dream alive.
Whereupon Doc met infamous guitar manufacturers Jean Larrivée and his son Matt Larrivée. A design was agreed upon and the new vintage Octofone Guitar was on its journey to be born. Jean began hand-building two prototypes, and as he made progress, the three of them began to hear the instrument’s beautiful harmonics develop, as if they were bringing a new spirit into the world. They asked--What would it look like? What would it sound like? How would it make us feel?
Watch the video and let the enchanting sound of the music speak to you.