The Donnie Reis Collection

Donnie Reis launches new collection of acoustic/electric violins

Before the Launch

In 2013, Donnie had an increasingly busy schedule on the road and in the studio. He quickly realized he needed “a utility violin.” This required superior sound without having to risk damage to his 100+ year old instrument. In 2014, Donnie was contacted by Barcus Berry to represent their new line of acoustic/electric violins, the Vibrato AE.

Barcus Berry’s piezo pickup allows him to plug in on stage. It also allows mobility, while providing the sound engineer more control over what the audience hears. Donnie says, “What I like most about the violin is that has the built-in piezo pickup. Plug it in and it sounds phenomenal,” he says. “It holds true to the pure craftsmanship of the standards of a true classical instrument, but achieves all of the goals of the modern performer.” (See full article here.)

Another critical feature for Reis, is that the pickup not dampen the acoustic sound of the instrument. The craftsmen that built his violin were able to achieve that, and from there, they knew they had something more musicians were going to need and love.

In order to develop his own brand, Donnie partnered with manufacturer, Jeff Saltzman, of International Music Cafe. They customized a series of five violins, from a student level to professional. Four of the five instruments feature the Barcus Berry piezo pickup.

Donnie, testing out a new violin for his collection in the workshop.

The Launch

In 2015, Donnie released The Donnie Reis Collection and attended NAMM in Anaheim, CA to showcase the line. His full collection can be found here. See Donnie when he’s performing live, playing The Tippecanoe from his line.

NAMM 2015
Donnie holding The Tippecanoe, from his line and his band mates, holding instruments from Barcus Berry’s Vibrato AE line, promoting their collaboration.