Sheppard Ave Maria


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                                                           SOLD--another beauty!

Gerald Sheppard Koa Ave Maria Grand Auditorium Custom Guitar

This is a very rare guitar, hand crafted by one of the finest luthiers today,  Gerald Sheppard.  

First, some introduction on Gerald Sheppard, from his website: 

"Gerald has been repairing and refinishing and building guitars for twenty years. He started building exclusively in 1993. Owning a fine instrument from the time he was a child has both spoiled and trained Gerald's ear for fine tone. Now that he supplies instruments to other serious musicians, his philosophy is simple: 

'What I build must first satisfy me, then 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.'"

The tone, playability, feel, fit and finish, everything is totally outstanding on this guitar.  Olson, Claxton, Ryan, McCollum, Bourgeois, Traugott, Beneteau, Dudenbostel, Blanchard, Manzer, Sobell, Carruth, Threet, McAlister, Eichelbaum, Wingert, Baranik, Gallagher, Alberico, Kinscherff, Laskin, Hoffman, Santa Cruz, Thompson, Collings, Froggy Bottom, Martin, etc. are all great guitars. However, this one is right there with the best of the best, and for quite a bit less $ than many makes mentioned above;  because it's very slightly  "used."  Really, it's like new, and the actual new price for this guitar (if any of these particular koa wood sets are still available from Gerald) is $8100.  The last I heard he had 1 set remaining.

This guitar was built  in 2002 as Gerald's personal guitar, with very unique, highly flamed, Master Grade Koa b/s, and with an Engelmann spruce top.   Here are more specifics of this Ave Maria model.

This 2002 Ave aria includes: 

bullet All Master Grade Wood Construction
bullet Master Grade koa back and sides
bullet Master Grade Engelmann spruce top
bullet Florentine Cut-away  
bullet Abalone Pearl Backstripe
bullet Mammoth Fossil Ivory Saddle, fully compensated for every string
bullet Mammoth Fossil Ivory Nut
bullet Special Abalone Pearl Wing/Crown Design Position Markers 
bullet Adirondack (Red) Spruce Bracing (Considered the best)
bullet Fully Scalloped Top Bracing
bullet Fine Quality Ebony Fingerboard, Bridge and Headstock Overlay
bullet .135" Wide Abalone Rosette (High Quality Paua, Red Heart of Paua rim)
bullet Ebony/pearl Eye Bridge Pins
bullet MOP Inlayed "Sheppard" logo
bullet Paua Pearl Fingerboard Side Dots (deep, colorful pearl)
bullet Deluxe Dyed Maple Purflings
bullet Walnut binding 
bullet Two Way Double Action Truss Rod
bullet Gold Schaller Tuners w/ebony buttons
bullet High Gloss Finish w/transparent pickguard
bullet Cut-away inlay
bullet Paua Heart Abalone Top Perimeter Purfling
bullet Paua Heart Abalone Purfling along both sides of the end wedge. 
bullet Bound Headstock and Fingerboard
bullet Rose on headstock
bullet Baggs I-beam pickup
bullet Mitered Side Purfling of Dyed Maple.
bullet High Quality "American Vintage" Hard-shell Case - a fine case with rolled leather handle.


A more specific breakdown with current pricing if ordered today is right here

The tone on this gutiar is just beautiful--not too loud, not to soft.  For example, I can really bang on it for the percussive sound to come through without having to wake up the neighbors. In other words, it kinda sounds like you're playing it louder than you really are, which definitely has its applications in my book for recording and performance, as well as playing in the living room.  I can also play as lightly as I want, and still hear those delicate decays and beautiful harmonics come through.  There's a beautiful rich warmth in the tone that captures the heart.


Oh, I forgot to mention,  this has a Baggs under bridge pickup  installed, and it sounds awesome plugged in as well--especially through my Baggs Para Acoustic DI box.

An incredibly stunning and unique slab of koa--best of all, it sounds completely alive--rich with bass and sparkle!  This Sheppard Ave Maria made the cover on the 2003 Acoustic Music Resource catalog!


Thanks for lookin',

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Follow these links for raw samples (no efx or EQ) of this guitar:

click here for sample 1

click here for sample 2


Another Sheppard Ave Maria Profile with Video and Audio
Fingerpick Magazine April, 2004
(Click above for article)

Click here to see the various Videos: WMV     MPG  
        Audio only:  MP3

Click on logo for  magazine 
home page.


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Thanks for lookin',

Ken T.
Graceworks Music

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Copyright 2001 Graceworks Music                  Last modified: March 17, 2007