Emerald Guitars has a very special connection to St. Louis, Missouri, the home of Steve Reeb, a self-employed home renovator and real estate investor.
It was after spending a summer working with legendary US Formula One boat racer Bill Seebold Jr. at his company Seebold Racing’s home base outside St Louis in 1994 that Emerald Guitars founder Alistair Hay was inspired to build his first carbon fibre guitar.
Steve first heard about Emerald Guitars through the MacNichol Guitars forum. “They sponsored a road trip for an X20 a couple of years ago. I loved it and contacted Emerald Guitars about buying it. However the, road trip for that instrument was extended (and extended) due to popularity, so Alistair contact me directly and built me an original blue X20 to my specs.”
Steve became a loyal customer and friend to Emerald Guitars and was particularly struck by Alistair’s fondness for his native St Louis after hearing about his time spent there.
Since receiving his first Emerald Guitar, Steve has purchased two further X20s, an X20 Artisan with a black matt finish and an amber X20-12 Woody. “The black X20 is a real cannon; It sounds amazing, even better than my blue X20. I just received the 12-string a few months ago, built after e-mail discussions with Alistair. Words cannot describe, nor video portray, the absolutely beautiful sound of that guitar. Plus, it never goes out of tune and the neck will never bow – quite important for a 12-string.”
Steve finds it hard to pin-point what he enjoys most about his Emerald Guitars. “Firstly, they are beautiful and I am asked about them at every gig. The X20 sound is equal to their beauty. A bonus, though some may consider this most important, is that they are impervious to the elements and I keep the black X20 in my vehicle.”
When he is not busy remodelling homes, Steve regularly gigs in the St. Louis area two to three times a week. “I do gig regularly and one of the Emeralds is always a part of the show. “People take notice and it draws them into the shows as I tell a short story about the guitars and Alistair’s fondness for St Louis.
“Later this week I’ll be in Huntsville, Alabama then in Indianapolis, Indiana, then finally Nashville, Tennessee – probably with the black X20. This trip is for pleasure and I don’t have any planned gigs, but something usually pops up when I carry a guitar around, which I always do.”
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