Famed Fiddler Mourns Loss Of Guthrie Shop, Priceless Instruments After Devastating Fire
A local legend is grieving the loss of countless valuable instruments and his business.
Famed fiddler Byron Berline lost his Double Stop Fiddle Shop to a massive fire Saturday.
To Berline’s knowledge, musical memories and one violin are all that made it out of the Guthrie shop in one piece.
“There's others I play but that was the main one. I'm glad we got that out. It's the only thing we got out,” Berline said of his treasured violin.
While no one person was injured in Saturday's flames, Berline says he feels the death of each string instrument he lost.
“They all had personalities and souls to them and I knew all of them. I just hated to think they died that death like that. They did seem like my friends,” Berline said.
Still, Berline has no shortage of friends in the Guthrie community. He's an internationally known performer, and his shop was just as renowned.
Berline, his band, and countless other performers have shared their music at the fiddle shop since the mid-1990s.
“That was a lot of memories there and all the people that played there, and all these young kids and older guys like myself,” Berline said.
Guthrie fire investigators say they know the fire started in the back-porch area of the flower shop next door, but they may never know an exact cause.
“It's just one of those that really hits home and makes you sick, and you wished you could have done more,” Guthrie Fire Chief Eric Harlow said.
Harlow worked with Berline to try to salvage anything they could from the wreckage Monday.
As he contemplates how to start over, Berline says he has been overwhelmed by the community support.
“I just cried when I heard it. So, it means a lot it really does,” Berline said.
The beloved musician will repay the community, by continuing to spread the sounds of his strings no matter what.
Berline says he will perform at the Community Church in March.