It was 1990, Larry Breedlove wanted to relocate to the small high desert town of Bend, Oregon – population just 20,000. A former logging community, the Cascade mountains were a haven for skiing, fishing, camping, mountain biking and rafting. Partnering with Steve Henderson they had a dream: to build acoustic instruments unlike any others. Experimenting with innovative designs, unique materials, and distinctive aesthetics, they created what was known as Breedlove sound. How? With two key structural components: a graduated top (thinner on the bass side and thicker on the treble side), and an innovative bridge truss system designed to enhance bass and midrange response by transferring some of the natural string-pull energy from the bridge to the tail block, thereby relaxing the top. The graduated top and the bridge truss created a uniquely musical and balanced voice that achieves remarkable sustain and harmonic complexity.
In 1992, they officially launched the company at NAMM with three body shapes and five models. In 1994, Larry’s brother Kim – a prolific luthier with two decades of experience building, repairing, and designing inlay for guitars, mandolins, dulcimers, and banjos – joined the small team as a master luthier. In 1995, Kim built the first Breedlove mandolin prototype that debuted at NAMM that year. The tiny company wrote 150 orders – and had no way to produce that volume of instruments. Kim spent the next year figuring out how to ramp up production to fill the demand, and suddenly Breedlove went from a little custom shop that produced a handful of instruments a year, to a force to be reckoned with.
Larry and Steve left the company, but Kim remained to carry on the vision of continued innovation. The results speak for themselves – an ongoing series of award-winning instruments that have earned the fierce loyalty and admiration of a generation of musicians and dealers. In the early 2000s, the company relocated from its rustic beginnings in Tumalo, OR to a new building in Bend, across from Summit High School.
In 2004, while continuing the handcraftsmanship in Bend, the Breedlove team took their innovative designs to a workshop in Korea, enabling a broader range of musicians to afford the unique Breedlove designs and sound.
All instruments are painstakingly designed in Bend, Oregon, utilizing exclusive design elements like their three proprietary body shapes – the Concertina, the Concert, and the Concerto, handcrafted necks, exotic tonewoods, and stunning inlays to deliver the instruments that will help you sound better, play better and play more. Breedlove’s goal is to optimize the sound of your music by becoming the Preeminent Authority on Acoustic Sound.
For more information, please visit: www.breedlovemusic.com