Modern Gretsch Guitars

Hmmm… I wonder???

1

I will try to word this so that no one construes that I am bashing or dissing Falcons in any way, as I am not. I just had a thought that I would like to share as nothing more than a topic of conversation.

Apologies already offered to any Falcon owners I might offend.

My thought. Do you feel that with the proliferation of so many Falcons in their many forms, it has diluted the mystique or exclusivity or eclectic charm of the guitar everyone wanted but only very few had?

2

Yes it has diluted their mystique but not their exclusivity since they are still expensive or their eclectic charm because they are still the Elvis jumpsuit of guitars.

3

I might get flamed for it but I actually feel like that about the whole Gretsch brand... a bit...sometimes...

4

I don't think so, the older ones will always be really special.

5

Yes. Yes. Yes. And I have contributed to that dilution of the uniqueness of the Falcon by buying several. But, nevertheless, I still agree with you, Bear.

6

I might get flamed for it but I actually feel like that about the whole Gretsch brand... a bit...sometimes...

– Ger (aka Ratrod)

It pains me to say but I agree.

7

As a former Falcon owner, and present Phoenix owner, I say yes.

I know times change, and then there's the marketing strategy with need to grow sales, but there's so many "Falcons" in various sizes and colors, that unfortunately it has become "just" another Gretsch, without the mystique that it used to have.

Just my thoughts, and I'm not saying that what's happened is wrong either, but "The Thrill Is Gone!" lol

Still great guitars, even with the new one's bindings that are totally wrong.

8

For us grizzled Falcon veterans, the thrill may be somewhat gone, but the Falcon continues to thrill the uninitiated. Anyone who comes by my desk at work when I have a picture of one on the screen is still awed if they've never seen one before.

9

As president of the Falcon haters club, I'm saddened by this proliferation of even more Falcon options.

Always known as the pinnacle of Gretsch ostentatiousness, Falcons(at any price point) were always just that to me, although if it were cowboy themed, I'd probably give them a pass, as Knotty Pine Roundups seem perfectly OK to me...go figure.

10

As a former Falcon owner, and present Phoenix owner, I say yes.

I know times change, and then there's the marketing strategy with need to grow sales, but there's so many "Falcons" in various sizes and colors, that unfortunately it has become "just" another Gretsch, without the mystique that it used to have.

Just my thoughts, and I'm not saying that what's happened is wrong either, but "The Thrill Is Gone!" lol

Still great guitars, even with the new one's bindings that are totally wrong.

– J(ust an old Cowboy)D

I agree with JD. I never owned a Falcon and love them but the Phoenix does the job and then some for me.

11

diluted the mystique or exclusivity or eclectic charm of the guitar everyone wanted but only very few had

You can say that about the whole brand as noted above. But try to imagine a world without Gretsches. I didn't have to: it practically existed in the early '80's. Through the whole SF Bay area, all I found was a very tired Tenny, a junky Gent, and weird doublecut called a Blackhawk hanging so far up the wall the shop owner sighed and told me he wouldn't bring it down unless I could show him the cash. I actually thought about hacking holes into the Tenny, I so badly wanted a 6120. When supply meets demand a bit of the thrill may be gone; but the bland tones in world without Gretsches is something I never want to experience again.

12

I guess it never even occurred to me. I'm not a big Falcon fan, just because that style of flash doesn't fit me. I'm more of the bass boat sparkle kind of flash. But I don't know how anyone else feels about guitars. I buy the ones I buy because I love them, and could really care less about any of the other junk that goes along with it. Sure, I have some rare instruments, though they aren't really any more valuable than the standard versions, but if I see someone else playing a Gretsch (Falcon or otherwise) it makes me happy because I know they are great guitars.

13

The entire brand is too prolific. Eliminate the streamliners and electromatics, reduce the proline back to vintage spec reissues only, and do away with the rest. Maybe even increase the prices. There should be a sense of mystique, and more so, exclusivity. If you can't afford it, maybe you shouldn't have it.

14
Do you feel that with the proliferation of so many Falcons in their many forms, it has diluted the mystique

YESSSSSS!!!!!!

When White Falcons began to be made available in black or green or red...the stupidity reached a level of epic proportions. Why didn't Gretsch just call them Black Hawks or Green Vultures or Red Birds?

As to the proliferation of various Falcon forms...I am immune to that because I happen to own a Falcon style that is no longer in production and not many seem to own anyway: the Baldwin era 7593.

Go on Gretsch, make all the Falcon styles you want. Better for me for it adds a certain mystique to my 7593 and makes it even more unique.

15

Yes ,i totally agree ,i still think a Falcon should be white and only white.

16

I know times change, and then there's the marketing strategy with need to grow sales, but there's so many "Falcons" in various sizes and colors, that unfortunately it has become "just" another Gretsch, without the mystique that it used to have. -- J(ust an old Cowboy)D

This. The Falcon has become just another wonderful Gretsch guitar, but the mystique is no longer there, at least for me. That was underscored for me when the acoustic Rancher White Falcon models (of which I bought one) were released. When you can buy a Falcon for under $1000, then it is hard to suggest that it is still a coveted guitar. Now, it is a very nice guitar from Gretsch.

17

Yes. Yes. Yes. And I have contributed to that dilution of the uniqueness of the Falcon by buying several. But, nevertheless, I still agree with you, Bear.

– Ric12string

Absolutely

18

diluted the mystique or exclusivity or eclectic charm of the guitar everyone wanted but only very few had

You can say that about the whole brand as noted above. But try to imagine a world without Gretsches. I didn't have to: it practically existed in the early '80's. Through the whole SF Bay area, all I found was a very tired Tenny, a junky Gent, and weird doublecut called a Blackhawk hanging so far up the wall the shop owner sighed and told me he wouldn't bring it down unless I could show him the cash. I actually thought about hacking holes into the Tenny, I so badly wanted a 6120. When supply meets demand a bit of the thrill may be gone; but the bland tones in world without Gretsches is something I never want to experience again.

– lx

Yep, experienced that. Just live in south central Nebraska back in the 70's and 80's.........what few music stores were around got that "what are you talking about look", when asked if they had a Gretsch, or knew of any for sale.

That was a period that I never want to go through again too.

19

Basically "The Falcon" has become just an different headstock shape.

Personally, I don't care. The bling was always too over the top for me. BuddyHollywood hit the nail on the head -- they ARE "the Elvis jumpsuit of guitars"! That said, I always liked the idea of my favorite brand having a truly exclusive guitar out there even if few can afford it.... like the White Falcon used to be in the late 1950's or the Martin D-200 Deluxe is today (I would not want one of those either).

20

I remember in high school in the mid-70's the best player we knew got an old white Gretsch, which come to think of it was probably a Falcon, and played it with his band at keg parties. Everyone was talking about it as if he had lost his mind.

21

I see where people think it has lost its uniqueness but to the uninitiated they are still a thing to behold. Guitar pals of mine who are non-Gretsch guys drool over my Falcon. I played it at a wedding and it drew a ton more compliments than I did!

22

I see where people think it has lost its uniqueness but to the uninitiated they are still a thing to behold. Guitar pals of mine who are non-Gretsch guys drool over my Falcon. I played it at a wedding and it drew a ton more compliments than I did!

– bman

I agree with that.

We, as us Gretsch nuts, get used to the whole line up, and get a little numb and picky to many things Gretsch.

For an "outsider", or at least to someone who isn't as close to the brand as most of us, seeing any Falcon is quite a thing and an experience.

Don't really want to say that a lot of us are "jaded", but we probably are.

23

Really the only one that really jumped the shark for me beyond what damage had already been done to the mystique was the so-called WF Jr that was really just a white 6120 with bling. (Although the White Penguin acoustic, which is just a fancied Jim Dandy is a problem too.) Gretsch long ago lost any idea of caring about the uniqueness of the brand. Which is sad as that was one of the reasons I fell in love with them. They weren't Fenders or Gibsons and weren't sold like that. There was a limited number of models, service lines, pickups, features, etc... You could actually recognize all the different variations by sight. Now there's so many letters in the model numbers that I defy any one to rattle off even half of the current models for sale.

That's probably why I only now own 3 Gretsches (and it may drop to 1.) At one point I had over 20. I can't think of one model I even care to look at. Sad.

24

I might get flamed for it but I actually feel like that about the whole Gretsch brand... a bit...sometimes...

– Ger (aka Ratrod)

Like yourself, (and many others here who have made similar comments), I too have grown more than a bit jaded and weary about the incredible variety of instruments now posing under the (once great) Gretsch moniker. FMIC's new motto seems to be "a Fender and a Gretsch in every hand"! Obviously they are succeeding, and in doing so absolutely killing the the thrill we all (GDP old timers) felt, in the wonder and mystique of those once exquisitely out-of-reach high end Gretsches. Fortunately, it has not diminished my love for playing, looking at, and listening to my 6122.

Still, with a couple of exceptions, the new lines tend to leave me cold, and I very much doubt that I'll ever be moved to buy another Gretsch. As for the Falcons, well I never was much a fan, but whenever I do think of them, I still see white! That is, until I browse through some of the newer Gretsch catalogs. Sometimes, just like an overindulgence in you favorite liquid spirit, there really can be too much of a good thing...

25

When I was a young, teenage kid, the White Falcon was the guitar I told myself that someday I would own. However, as I matured, the heavy bling stopped being so desirable for me and I never really liked the "V" headstock.

As most of you know, I've owned several 1960s Gretsches and some of the FMIC Pro-Lines and Electromatics. My favorite of the bunch was my 5122. A better playing or sounding Gretsch I've never owned or played with the exception of Curt's 1958 Country Club. I hope I got the year right. That guitar in particular I believe God had a hand in building. If you've never played it, you have missed guitar perfection.


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