From the Team / 27 September 2017

Celebrating Heritage at 225 Parsons

Down Memory Lane

225 Parsons St., Kalamazoo, Michigan, is the home of 100 years of guitar history. The building was formerly home to the first Gibson guitars manufacturing site, which became known for its intricate craftsmanship, and dedicated artistry.

After Gibson moved to Nashville some of the former employees stuck around and built what we now know as Heritage Guitars.

“He who works with his hands is a laborer.

He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.

He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.”

A combined 84 years of guitar-building experience was shared between the original owners of Heritage; Jim Deurloo, Marv Lamb, and JP Moats, whose practices still carry on today. Necks are still hand-made by Luthiers, whose unparalleled expertise comes with decades in the business. Rims are still bent on a vintage flame-heated bending die, while each fret still carefully dressed by hand for optimum sound. To own a Heritage guitar, is to hold a unique piece of music history.  

The Best Days Are The Future

Some very lucky members of our Swee Lee team rubbed shoulders with Kalamazoo’s faithful at this year’s 225 Parsons Centennial celebration. We mingled with people of all ages and backgrounds who danced and harmonised to live music, all whilst soaking up the history of this landmark. Vintage guitar antiquities also enjoyed time out of their shelves to be showcased to the visitors, demonstrating the craft of guitar building at 225 Parsons that stretched over the past 100 years.

And while we’re all still merry, here’s a secret we’re delighted to share – 225 Parsons is set to pin itself on the international music map in the next couple of years. There will be a brand new, music-focused Rolling Stone experience at 225 Parsons St. – all to preserve its rich history, and ensuring its longevity for years to come.

Our team at Swee Lee are also stoked to have struck a chord with a sales and marketing partnership to support Heritage Guitars. From one legacy brand to another, we look forward to sharing Heritage Guitars’ influence amongst guitar lovers in Southeast Asia.

Here’s some pics from the celebrations:


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