Musician Byron Berline has been reunited with another instrument damaged in the February 2019 fire that destroyed his fiddle shop.
“Four hundred and something fiddles were lost. You start thinking about it and it really get you down,” Berline said.
Since the fire, every instrument that can be salvaged and repaired is celebrated.
The latest is a pre-war Martin guitar that Berline got at a music festival in California more than 25 years ago.
“That feel and that tone, it just rumbles,” said Berline about the instrument.
The fire badly damaged the guitar that was kept inside a gun safe.
The once repaired headstock of the guitar broke again and the heat blistered the finish.
“It just looked horrible, yet the body of the guitar was intact almost 100%,” said Jim Baggett, of Mass Street Music in Lawrence, Kansas.
Baggett has repaired guitars for Johnny Cash and Keith Richards and jumped at the chance to help an old friend out with the restoration.
“It’s great to be part of the recovery process in my own way,” said Baggett.
He did the work for free.
Baggett delivered the restored Martin guitar on the two year anniversary of the fire that destroyed the Double Stop Fiddle Shop.
“It’s hard to describe. It’s a light. It’s a ray of hope that its not all bad,” said Berline about getting the instrument back.