Press Releases

Elixir® Strings Travel the World with Blackbird Guitars

ELKTON, MD, APRIL 6, 2010 — Blackbird Guitars, creators of unique carbon fiber acoustic guitars, has teamed up with Elixir Strings to outfit the latest version of the company’s Super OM guitar. Designed for players seeking robust guitars that can be used in a variety of settings ranging from typical indoor stage concerts to performances on the docks of Antarctica, Blackbird Guitars have traveled the world over.

During a sailing trip through the Mediterranean Sea, co-founder, guitar player, and songwriter Joe Luttwak pined for a guitar to accompany his adventure on the high seas; it was then that the concept for Blackbird Guitars was born. Searching for years for guitars to bring on their outdoor adventures, Luttwak and co-founder Kyle Wolfe were inspired to build instruments that would be versatile enough to be used in the studio, on a hiking trip through the woods, or at a concert at McMurdo Station in Antarctica.

Like all Blackbird Guitars, the full-size Super OM acoustic guitar is built from carbon fiber materials which allow the instrument to be incredibly durable. When looking for the proper strings to complement the guitar line, the company selected acoustic 80/20 bronze light gauge Elixir Strings with NANOWEB® Coating. Elixir Strings provides the resiliency and sturdiness for which Blackbird Guitars strives.

"I’ve been familiar with Elixir Strings for years and they seemed like the obvious choice for our instruments as they share our philosophy in durability," says Luttwak, "They sound quite good and of course they’re very durable and long-lasting strings that are able to stand up to the elements."

Compared to traditional guitar strings, Elixir Strings use an ultra thin NANOWEB Coating to prevent oxidization and corrosion, which afford players throughout the world the extended lifespan they desire. This feature is especially important to Blackbird Guitars, which have traveled by air and by sea from North America, to Asia; from Europe to Australia; and everywhere in between.

While the feel of the NANOWEB Coating provides players with a more enjoyable playing experience, the strings do not compromise tone. With Elixir Strings, players still enjoy the playability, bright tone, and punch of non-coated strings.

Designed to be the most resonant and responsive instruments possible, all Blackbird Guitars include a hollow neck and head, and are made of carbon fiber. This structure allows the guitars to transmit a wider range of frequencies not found in traditional wood guitars. Elixir Strings add a distinct sound quality to the unique tone of the Blackbird Guitar line.

"Blackbird guitars strung with Elixir Strings produce a mellow but clear tone that work well with the clarity of our instruments," continues Luttwak. "They are very vivid, but in a pleasing way. They accentuate the instruments’ already-present brightness—which is a unique feature for our guitars. The 80/20’s suit us very well because of that."

Blackbird Guitars launched a new version of the Super OM guitar at Winter NAMM 2010. At under 4 pounds, the full-size orchestra model instrument is among the lightest acoustic guitars available. The Super OM provides the same dreadnought volume and fullness found in big guitars, but in a compact frame which provides players with superior resonance. The suggested retail price for the Super OM is $2,495.

Interested parties can meet with the designers to create a custom guitar. For more information on Elixir Strings, please visit For more information on Blackbird Guitars, or to find a dealer near you, please visit

About Blackbird Guitars
Blackbird Guitars was founded in 2005 by Joe Luttwak and Kyle Wolfe, who dreamed of having the sounds of a full size acoustic guitar in a smaller body so they could take it trekking and traveling. Based in the San Francisco Bay area the company now has a full line of steel and nylon string guitars and ukuleles.

About Elixir® Strings
Elixir Strings is the pioneer in coated string technology and strings are available in two 'flavors.' Strings with ultra-thin NANOWEB® Coating provide the bright tone and punch of uncoated strings, yet keep their lively tone three to five times longer than ordinary strings. The thin coating is nearly undetectable—providing the feel of traditional strings. Elixir Strings with original POLYWEB® Coating also sound great three to five times longer than ordinary strings, have a balanced tone with smooth response, feel comfortably smooth, and reduce finger squeak. Elixir Strings are available in a full range of gauges for acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass, banjo, and mandolin.

Today, Elixir Strings are installed as original equipment by a growing list of discriminating electric guitar and bass manufacturers including Ibanez, Tom Anderson Guitarworks, iGuitar, Carvin, and Melancon Guitars as well as premium acoustic guitar luthiers such as Taylor Guitars, Santa Cruz Guitar Company, Lakewood Guitars, CA Guitars, Carvin, and Goodall Guitars. Elixir Strings are endorsed by popular artists such as Melissa Etheridge, Dave Mason, Michael W. Smith, Jim Messina, Christopher Cross, Bob Seger, Taylor Swift, Jewel, and Drowning Pool.

Elixir Strings are manufactured by W. L. Gore & Associates,Inc., the company widely known for such innovations as GORE-TEX® Fabrics.