The Northampton Arts Council works to support and nurture the arts in the city of Northampton. The Council awards grants twice each year to artists and arts groups from both state and locally-raised funds, and seeks to improve public awareness of the arts. Its' goals include maintaining and preserving the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Northampton, programming such annual events of interest to the community as First Night Northampton and Transperformance.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

World-famous luthier’s Red Sox guitar lands in Western MA

Harvey Leach's "Reverse the Curse" guitar now at Goat Peak Strings

Easthampton, Mass. - Many wagers were placed before the Boston Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, but few outcomes compare to the artistry of world-renowned luthier and inlay artist Harvey Leach’s  “Reverse the Curse” guitar, which is now for sale at Goat Peak Strings in Easthampton, Mass.

In 1999, California-based luthier, inlay artist, and avid Boston Red Sox fan, Harvey Leach, put forth a wager that when and if the team ever won the World Series again, he would do a special commemorative inlaid guitar for the cost of one of his basic builds. Fast forward to 2004, the Red Sox win the World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals, and an anonymous buyer emerges.

The build begins with wood from cedar wine casks made in 1918, the last year the Red Sox won the World Series with Babe Ruth before trading the star player to the New York Yankees. Leach used the highest quality walnut for the back and sides, and bound the guitar with bloodwood for all the years of suffering Red Sox fans had to endure.

Some of the most collectible and desired guitars ever built are adorned with Leach’s inlay artwork. Most notably, Leach contributed his artistry to the 1.5 millionth C.F. Martin Guitar ever made:  the famous Leonardo Da Vinci Guitar which is insured for over a million dollars and kept in Martin's personal museum. The Reverse the Curse guitar fretboard features the Red Sox logo eclipsing the Yankees’, followed by the year 2004 in roman numerals. The neck is topped with a kokopelli motif made to look like MVP Manny Ramírez. Leach designed a diamond-shaped sound hole featuring 2004’s playoffs teams at each base pad: the Yankees, Houston Astros, and St. Louis Cardinals.

One of the services provided at Goat Peak Strings is the brokering of valuable and rare stringed instruments like the Leach guitar. Co-owner Alex Gray has been in the business of instrument collection for many years and has accumulated contacts nationwide. He’s an official contributor for Vintage Guitar Magazine’s “Price Guide.”

For a closer look, check out Goat Peak Strings on YouTube.

More about Goat Peak Strings
Opened in 2014, Goat Peak Strings specializes in vintage, rare and collectible stringed instruments, as well as new custom instruments from local builders.  The shop offers expert repairs and restorations, offering personalized service to players of any caliber.  Founders Jane Hamel and Alex Gray are veteran luthiers and collectors with over 75 years of experience between them.  They consider themselves caretakers of these fine instruments, and keepers of history, continuing traditions that are generations old. For more information, please visit

Contact: Melissa Breor

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