Posted: January 23, 2016
The new Gretsch Players Edition is designed to provide ultimate stability, maximum comfort and powerful sound, resulting in a line of workhorse guitars meant to be played throughout the entire set—every song, every night.
Here are 10 new features behind these professional-grade instruments:
Thinner bodies – 2.25”
Thinner bodies provide greater comfort during long sets, and allow the player to freely “dig in.”
String-Thruy Bigsby Tailpieces
Allows for quick, painless string changes.
Pinned Rocking Bar Bridges
Maximum string glide over the bridge allows greater tuning stability while using Bigsby.
TUSQ XL Nuts
Minimizes friction between string and nut.
Locking Tuning Keys
Locking Keys provide easy string changes and excellent tuning stability.
Squeezebox PIO Capacitors
PIO Caps give that silky vintage sound and taper. Treble Bleed Circuit allows the player to back off the volume for greater tonal control.
No-Load Tone Pots
When the tone switch is maxed, Filter’Trons are “wide open.” Rolling back the tone knob engages a smooth rolloff and great tonal flexibility .
Reducing body size can also reduce big body fullness. ML bracing promotes greater air movement and restores the big body sound within a thinner body.
Reinforced Input Jacks
Jack is supported by a wood block that minimizes the danger of the jack pulling through the body.
Guitar remains secure onstage, regardless of player’s movement or activity.
Posted: January 21, 2016
Holy smokes! Once again, Gretsch Custom Shop Master Builder Stephen Stern has built some truly extravagant custom shop models for the 2016 NAMM Show in Anaheim, Calif.
Here’s a quick look at 8 glorious Gretsch Custom Shop guitars, which all had a “car” theme …
G6136 Luxury Falcon “Spectre”
Inspired by an old Rolls Royce, this Black Falcon screams class, but with just a touch of flash thanks to the chrome pickguard, ruby red sparkle on the pickups bobbins and red sparkle binding around the bock, neck, headstock and even inside the F holes. The Spectre also features an ebony fingerboard that somehow just seems the perfect for this beauty.
G6134 Luxury Penguin “Roadster”
Luxurious is certainly the right word for this Penguin Roadster, inspired by the Duesenberg. The custom beauty features a chambered mahogany body finished in bright red with tan leather sides that mimic the interior upholstery of your favorite ride. In a finishing touch, the pickups are also accented with tan coloring to match the sides, while the guitar body, neck and headstock are wrapped in a tortoiseshell binding. The walnut burl even matches what you’d expect to see on a luxury car steering wheel or console.
6120 Derby Racer Heavy Relics
The trio of G6120 Derby Racer Heavy Relic guitars below pay tribute to stock racing cars and was a collaboration between Stern and artist Sara Ray who treated each guitar with a unique custom paint job.
The G6120 Derby Racer Heavy Relic “Hammerhead” seems like an ode to the high seas with its aqua blue finish featuring cartoon-ish looking hammerhead sharks, including one on the body and another on the see-through pickguard. The body, neck and headstock are capped off by red binding that blends well with a blood-red headstock featuring a pirate flag. Although based off a ’59 6120, this model features P-90 pickups instead of the common Filter’Tron pickups.
“That’s a little different for Gretsch,” noted Stern of the pickups.
G6120 Derby Racer Heavy Relic “Nashville Nelle”
Based off a ’55 6120, the Nashville Nelle pays homage to the American flag with its red, white and blue paint job, also featuring a pair of buxom blondes. Also has a custom belt-buckle tailpiece with a checkered flag racing theme.
G6120 Derby Racer Heavy Relic “Brooklyn Bruiser”
Based off a ’67 6120, Ray delivered on the bruiser theme with a menacing muscle man swinging his sledgehammer, against a cream backdrop.
All three models have a number painted on the back of the guitars, just like you’d expect to see on the door panels of racing cars.
G6199 Gretsch Custom Caddy-Bo
This trio of G6199 Gretsch Custom Caddy-Bo guitars is a play off the Bo Diddley Jupiter Thunderbird guitars, but in classic car finishes such as Limo Black, Cadillac Green and Shell Pink.
All feature chrome Cadillac tailpieces, silver glitter binding and chrome knobs.
Posted: January 15, 2016
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.
Posted: January 15, 2016
Decked in formal wear, the Grammy-winning singer and her bandmates performed “Late to the Party.
Check out the clip below, featuring lovely harmonies, lush string arrangements, glitter, balloons and some vintage Gretsch Country Gentleman action.
Posted: January 13, 2016
Opening Jan. 15 at Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the Bachman-Gretsch Collection of vintage Gretsch guitars will provide a visually stunning window into the evolution of the instrument, from the early 1930s to the early 1980s.
This new exhibit marks the largest showing of stringed instruments ever mounted by the museum. Comprised of 75 guitars, it also marks the most comprehensive look at the Bachman-Gretsch Collection ever made available to the public.
The collection was amassed by Canadian guitarist and songwriter Randy Bachman, a key member of rock bands the Guess Who and Bachman-Turner Overdrive. Bachman acquired more than 300 historic and rare Gretsch guitars in the 1970s and 1980s, which was purchased in 2008 by the Gretsch Foundation, the charitable arm of the Gretsch Family.
Gretsch’s Senior Vice President of Marketing Jeff Cary, who recently previewed the exhibit, sat down with Country Music Hall of Fame Curatorial Director Mick Buck to share his thoughts on the collection.
Watch the clip below to hear from Cary, and get a look at some of the stunning guitars on display. Also, be sure to click here to find out how YOU COULD WIN A TRIP TO NASHVILLE TO VIEW THE COLLECTION!
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