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Premier Guitar Spotlights a Vintage Gretsch 1957 6120

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Vintage Gretsch '57 6120Premier Guitar’s John Bohlinger sat down recently with Lloyd Nicely of Gruhn Guitars to demo a vintage Gretsch 1957 6120 for an “Axes & Artifacts” segment.

In the video, Nicely explains the unique features that Gretsch built for Chet Atkins based on what they believed the musician would desire in an instrument. (Later, Gretsch would work directly with Atkins to design a guitar to his exact specifications, which led to the introduction of the G6122 model.)

The ’57 G120 features the “Cadillac” of bound bodies and is equipped with a three-way toggle, two DeArmond Dynasonic pickups and a black enamel Bigsby tailpiece. As pointed out in the clip, during the ‘50s-era the Bigsby was a luxury piece that cost a whopping $75 back in the day. To put that in perspective, the entire guitar could be purchased for roughly $295, so the Bigsby alone cost nearly one-third of the guitar!

Lloyd also describes the key features that peg this guitar as a product of 1957, which include hump top inlays and Brazilian rosewood. Also, this model pre-dates the zero fret feature that Atkins introduced in ’59 to bring more sustain to the guitar.

Watch the video below to learn all about this gorgeous guitar, and hear it ring while played through a 1961 Fender Bassman.

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Guitar World Awards White Falcon with Platinum Award

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In its January 2016 issue, Guitar World magazine bestowed its Platinum Award to the Gretsch G6136t-LTV White Falcon.

Reviewer Chris Gill offered up a short write-up of the Falcon’s history, noting that it was originally designed to appease jazz players and promoted as the “Cadillac of guitars.”  But despite constructing the Falcon to that audience, instead, the instrument soon became associated with rock and roll thanks to the likes of Neil Young, Stephen Stills, Billy Duffy and James Hetfield.

“I even fondly remember seeing Malcolm Young grappling with a huge White Falcon during a late-Seventies AC/DC concert,” noted Gill.

“Today Gretsch offers a dozen Falcon models, including versions with black or green finishes,” he continued. “Each is cool in its own way, but my personal favorite is the new G6136T-LTV White Falcon. Based upon the late ’50s version, the G6136T-LTV includes a few modern updates that make it possibly the best White Falcon ever.”

Gill goes on to explain those features, including the Adjusto-Matic bridge that is pinned into place and a pair of TV Jones TV Classic humbucking pickups, which are based on the highly desirable PAF Filter’Tron pickups of the late ’50s.

Gill’s “Bottom Line”?

“With its just-right balance of classic aesthetics and modern upgrades, the Gretsch G6136T-LTV is by far the best White Falcon model that the company currently offers, particularly for rock-minded players.”

Read the full review here, and also check out a video demo below by Paul Riaro.

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Port Mac Guitars Demos a Gretsch G6120 Chet Atkins Hollowbody

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Port Mac GuitarsChris Haigh of Australian retailer Port Mac Guitars recently picked up a Gretsch G6120 Chet Atkins Hollowbody to showcase some of the classic tones this beautiful guitar can achieve.

For the demo, Haigh plugged into a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe Combo, and you can check it out in full below.

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Watch Dan Auerbach Examine a Vintage Chet Atkins Guitar on American Pickers

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Dan Auerbach American PickersIn case you missed Dan Auerbach on the season premiere of American Pickers earlier this year – which we seemed to have done – video has surfaced of the Black Keys guitarist’s appearance.

Why blog it in this space? Well, the object of Auerbach’s interest during the episode happens to be a special Gretsch guitar.

Auerbach met up with Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz of Antique Archaeology in Nashville, who came bearing a vintage Chet Atkins model that once belonged to someone named “Rudy,” according to stickers on the weathered body.

“The Chet Atkins model is probably the most desirable Gretsch, I’d say,” Auerbach noted. “I’ve never even played one.”

It seemed that Auerbach was dead set on making this find the first of its kind in his collection.

“There’s a difference between guitars that collectors collect and ones that players use,” he said with a smile. “This one is a player’s guitar.”

Watch Auerbach’s reaction in the clip below.

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Premier Guitar Features 1962 Gretsch 6196 in its Vintage Vault

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In the April 2015 issue, Premier Guitar put a spotlight on a 1962 Gretsch 6196 as part of its Vintage Vault series.

The instrument, on display at Dave’s Guitar Shop in La Cross, Wisc., has features often associated with Gretsch guitars from 1962, including a “cushioned for comfort” back pad that hid a hole designed to provide easy access to the interior wiring, a built-in string mute, and a standby switch. Additionally, the guitar includes gold Filter’Tron humbuckers, Space Control bridge, and ebony fretboard with Neo-Classic inlays (standard since 1958).  Instead of the stock “G” tailpiece, this vintage guitar is equipped with a non-original Bigsby vibrato.

Read more about this vintage ax here.

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