In this episode we consider a slice of rock’n’roll history that deserves a little more attention from most of us. Dan and I are fans of Gretsch as much for the stunning, evocative aesthetics as the unique, genre-defining tones. Gretsch guitars were, are and always will be entirely their own thing.
Now, neither of us are connoisseurs by any means and, let’s be honest, our historical knowledge on the brand is shaky at best. Nevertheless with great thanks to our friend Adam Bowden-Smith at Gretsch who loaned us three of these lovely specimens, we take a gentle stroll through a handful of key Gretsch tonal touchpoints, with some more familiar (to us) classics on hand for context. And of course a smattering of stompboxes!
It’s far from a history lesson and for sure there are countless other great Gretsches still to discover… but let’s just dive in and see what happens. As always, the questions thrown up here will make a great follow-up show in due course. It’s the TPS way after all.
Please do check the Gretsch website to double check some of our doubtless shonky info. To whit…
At around 22 mins wish, I say Chet Atkins signed The Everly Brothers. He didn’t, sorry. They weren’t on RCA Victor. He did however help them get their deal at Warner Brothers. So I was a little tiny bit sorta kinda right. He was a mentor to them. He did sign Dolly though. Woah.
Interesting bits and go-to sections…
- Intro playing: 0:00
- What are we doing today? 1:27
- Pickups? 3:20
- Today’s amps, and a tape echo: 4:20 (4:50)
- Dan’s 6118T Anniversary: 4:30
- Gretsch in rock music:
- Can we do Pete Townshend? 8:11
- Duane Eddy Signature 6120 and DynaSonics: 9:50 (10:30)
- DynaSonic & Filter’Tron comparison: 11:50
- Jazzmaster? 13:40
- Gibson ES-335? 14:22
- 6120 Chet Atkins Hollowbody and Duane Eddy compared: 15:30
- A DC resistance point of note: 17:40
- Chet Atkins was a solid dude: 21:00
- Oh no. Mick picks. Or at least tries to: 24:14
- 58 for the humbucker?! It was 1957 you doofus! (Sorry, Mick here). 26:07
- The Jet guitar and the ‘solid’body revolution: 28:55
- BT Jet and Broad’Tron BT65 pickups: 30:00
- BT Jet & Les Paul compared: 31:10
- …and with gain… 32:30
- Gold Foils? 35:49
- Dan’s Tele? 38:13
- Blacktop Filter’Trons and Mick’s G5422TG: 38:07
- Arggghhh, enough talking: let’s just have a play: 41:30
Amps in this episode
• Matchless HC-30 & HK 212 cab with Celestion G12M Greenback speakers
• Victory V140 The Super Duchess & V212VC cabinet / Celestion G12H Creamback speakers