by Serena Markstrom
JUNE 29, 2012
Here’s a cute, feel-good story about teenage blues singer Savanna Coen getting something special from a talented admirer. Saturday at the Fan Festival of the Olympic Trials she will debut a $5,000 custom guitar created by a local maker who saw her perform with Buddy Guy.
Last summer Willamette Valley Blues & Brews Festival Coen, who’s 14 now, so badly wanted to win a guitar being raffled off at that event.
“She had her heart set on it and really thought she would win it,” Greenough, the local guitar-maker who had donated the instrument to the raffle, said in a news release. “In the end, it went to someone else and it broke my heart to give Savanna the news.”
Greenough owns Fox Hollow Guitars, and even though he knew Coen wanted to win the raffle, he had never
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heard her sing, but a couple of weeks later he was at the Buddy Guy show at the Douglas County Fair.
During that show Guy invited Coen onto stage with him after a brief meeting backstage, the news release says, and she got to front the band for two songs using the blues superstar’s guitar, performing for that Roseburg crowd of 4,000.
“I had the same reaction the rest of the crowd did: she blew me away,” Greenough said. “I knew I had to do something to help her career.”
He called her up and offered to make a guitar to her specifications. What they came up with was a Gibson- style semi-hollow body acoustic/electric combo guitar in a shade of Emerald green using exotic zebrawood with a neck made from 100-year-old Honduran mahogany originally used as a floor plank in a Honduran coffee mill, the release says.
The guitar has acoustic and electric pickups, so it can be used as either an electric guitar or an acoustic one, or both at the same time with two amplifiers.
Here’s a photo of the guitar-in-progress
At 12:15 p.m., during the Fan Festival, she will debut the guitar during a 45-minute set with her band.