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Gerald has been repairing, refinishing, and building guitars for over thirty years. In 2013 he celebrated the 20th Anniversary of Gerald Sheppard Guitars. Gerald builds nine to twelve guitars per year. His guitars have been used by professional artists and featured on the Grammy winning Pink Guitar CD. He has been a featured luthier at the renowned Swannanoa Gathering for thirteen years. As an accomplished lifelong fingerstyle guitarist himself, Gerald understands how to match custom design components to the needs of his client. His instruments have been used for professional studio work and on stage by today's top guitarists. Tone related design features include concentricity of the lower bouts and tuned chamber frequencies. Aesthetic features include the choice natural materials, the use of color, and a focus on refined elegance. Gerald offers five body shapes, three aesthetic designs. These tasteful designs combined with the finest tonewoods and materials produce peerless sophistication. It is Gerald's opinion that while just about any wood can be used to produce a guitar, only certain woods can be called "tonewoods". Gerald reminds us that, relatively speaking, the belief that a great luthier can make a great sounding guitar with any type of wood is simply untrue - visual appeal should always follow the tone and playability of an instrument and use of true tonewoods in an experienced maker's hand will produce unmatched tone, playability, and beauty. Gerald holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Technology. He attributes much of his success to the "word of mouth" of his customers and professional players. Their support and loyalty have been key to this long running career and an instrument maker. Gerald also attributes his achievement to extensive research, hands-on experience and experimentation, association with instrument guilds, and feedback from professional musicians and his customers. With his background in engineering, Gerald understands the subject of quality. He has applied it to his guitar making processes and it shows. He also knows that time honored craftsmanship cannot be automated! That's why Sheppard guitars are handmade of the best quality materials available and are as beautiful to behold as they are to hear. "What I build must first satisfy me, but the biggest test is that it must satisfy the musician. I must assume that the guitarist has an excellent ear for fine tone based upon years of experience; why else would he/she even be interested in a high quality instrument? My intention is to help the guitarist present a piece of music to the best of his/her ability, and for it to sound the way it was intended to sound." - Gerald Sheppard
Kingsport, Tennessee
John Wynn, Doug Young, Brian Field, Larry Pattis, Tim Lovell
Dream Series, Ave Maria Petite Concert, Ave Maria Grand Concert, Ave Maria Grand Auditorium, Madrigal Grand Concert, Madrigal Grand Auditorium, Madrigal Petite Concert, Dreadnought, Jumbo