“Detroit has always been about making things… and it’s always been about making music,” Mark Wallace, the founder of Wallace Detroit Guitars, says in an introduction video on his website.

For about a year and a half, Wallace has been reclaiming wood from a few of Detroit’s 80,000 plus abandoned buildings and transforming them into top of the line guitars. Not only do these guitars look great, they sound amazing. Each instrument is carefully hand crafted out of bits and pieces of Detroit – pieces that were once part of an eye sore.

Although Wallace has only made about 24 guitars so far, it’s clear he knows what he’s doing by the video testimonials he has on his site. Each testimony is given by proven guitarists who rock with the best of them and each video shows the wide range of sounds Wallace’s Detroit Guitars can deliver. Each instrument is a work of art and sounds just as great as it looks.

Wallace tells Chip Reid of CBS News, “It feels great, as an instrument. It’s also great to know that it’s something I built and something that came out of the city of Detroit.”

Much like the city they come from, these guitars are being rebuilt from the rubble with the skills and love they deserve. Also like our city, the wood itself has a storied history. Every scrap of reclaimed wood started off in a growth forest and grew slowly. “Wallace says the lumber has tight grain patterns and provides great resonance and sound,” Reid continues.

So whether or not you know how to shred, anyone can appreciate what Wallace Detroit Guitars represent: that something beautiful can come out of even desolation.