May 19, 2022 - Business

Delgado Guitars brings Nashville vibe to Geodis Park

Luthier Manuel Delgado and his family pose with the guitar he custom built for Geodis Park.
Luthier Manuel Delgado and his family pose with the guitar he custom-built for Geodis Park. Photo: courtesy of Delgado Guitars

To ensure that the new Geodis Park has an authentic Nashville vibe, the Nashville SC collaborated with local artists to fill the new stadium.

Driving the news: Among the artwork is a guitar built by luthier Manuel Delgado of East Nashville's Delgado Guitars.

  • Delgado has been asked to custom make guitars as artwork in the past. He made a guitar for Maker's Mark and another for Arrow McLaren Racing, which was built using parts from one of the company's race cars.
  • For the guitar at Geodis Park, Delgado used leftover materials from the stadium's construction.

Why it matters: The collaboration with the SC is just the latest example of Delgado Guitars' inroads in Nashville's creative community. The company, which relocated to Nashville in 2005, counts band members from Old Crow Medicine Show and Los Lobos among its clients.

  • Delgado tells Axios the collaboration with the Nashville SC was especially meaningful because the team prioritized working with artists from diverse cross-sections of the city.
  • "As a small business owner — we've been in business 94 years — but you're always trying to figure out ways to stay relevant and to stay in business, to be quite frank," Delgado says.

Details: Delgado matched the colors used to paint the back of the guitar to the Nashville SC's proprietary uniform colors.

  • But the guitar at Geodis Park isn't just a pretty piece of art. The instrument, which is on display in a suite inside the stadium, can actually be played.

What he's saying: "I'm a luthier. I handmake musical instruments," Delgado says. "There's no machines — I'm making it. The instrument has to be the most important thing."

  • "But if we can do something visually that brings in somebody who may not be in this [musical] pool that we're swimming in, and we can make a connection to whatever their interests are, I think that's really meaningful."
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