Modern Gretsch Guitars

Just ordered a 6120-59 My First Gretsch

1

Long time Brian Setzer fan, I’ve often thought about buying a high end Gretsch but was scared off by the price. But I’ve wasted thousands buying and selling (at a loss of course) guitars that just couldn’t hold my interest past the initial excitement.

Yesterday I played a 55 at a local store (I was dying to get out of the house and go play some guitars, I’m sure you can relate!) As I drove away I was aware that I felt kind of “buzzed” after playing that guitar. I don’t think I’ve ever felt that way before (and I’ve been playing 40+ years!) I thought hmm, this is interesting.

Anyway even though I really liked that guitar I spent the evening researching different models (including the Setzers) I concluded the 59 has all the features I want. I have a Sweetwater gear card so I decided to mortgage the next 2 years for this “bucket list” guitar.

So I thought I should go find a Gretsch forum to connect with kindred spirits who can help enable my gear addiction!

I’m kind of a Jack of all trades guitarist who plays mostly jazz, blues and rock (though I’d like to learn Western Swing!) I’ve always loved 50s style rock and roll and I can’t wait to hear how everything I play sounds through this guitar! Any thoughts?

2

Congratulations, Tony! My first Gretsch was a 6120 as well, a SSLVO about 13 years ago now. I hope you have many happy years with yours!

3

Thank you, I thought I should also share that I've been working on an album of instrumental 50s style music for a library. This is music that would be used as underscore for scenes in a TV show or possibly an ad. They asked for it to be minimal so I've avoided any elaborate productions. I used my 1966 Guild Starfire for these first three songs, but I'm sure the Gretsch will soon dominate the rest of the tracks! Here's a link:

Link

4

You're going to have a ball.

5

Congratulations and welcome aboard!

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Tony, welcome and condolences on acquiring a malady that will keep you poor but happy with Gretsch GAS. The three songs that you did with the Starfire sound great and the Starfire sounds perfect for the feel that you are creating. By and large Gretsch and Guild fans are usually big fans of the other as well. I now have four Gretsches and two Guilds. Both are great values compared to other brands Gibson ,

I think you will like this forum. With few exceptions, we tend to be a friendly bunch unless someone starts a political rant. When the 6120-59 gets here, we want a full illustrated report. Some pictures of the Guild would be nice as well.

7

Hi Tony. I am a newbie, too. I acquired a 6620 at the beginning of December and was so hooked by their playability, cool looks, and most of all, sound, that I bought a Black Phoenix Christmas week. I couldn't be more in love with them, and like you, I played around with everything else, including Ricks and Gibbos, which never stuck around for very long.

I don't know much, yet, but I am certain that a 6120 is also in my future. An orange one looks so damn cool, and the sound that Setzer gets out of his is really appealing.

Welcome. It's a great addiction.

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Thanks folks, Metman I love that Nash you're sporting as an avatar! I just looked through my pix but while there are many of me playing the Guild (it was my #1 at one time), they're all cut off, can't see much. So I'll take a few and upload them in a minute. Really appreciate all positive vibes guys, happy new year!

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I have two pics, one front and one back because this guitar has a fun story.

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Sorry, I'm just getting used to the forum.

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Congratulations, Tony and welcome. You are going to LOVE that guitar!

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Okay, so apparently my dad (who used to be a pro keyboard player) bought this guitar from a friend of his for $75 bucks sometime in the 1970s because, as you can see, it was used in a bar fight. We don't know what knucklehead decided to repair the damage with nails and bondo (not my dad's friend, I'm told he acquired it as a throw away in a trade).

Fast forward 30 years or so. I pick up a used a Starfire ii and decide to take it with me back East visiting relatives (I live in Seattle now, my dad is in Philly). I take it out of the case and my dad says, "oh I have a guitar just like that." "No, you don't." "Yeah, I do." "No way, I've been through all your stuff and you don't have anything like this." So dad goes away for about 20 minutes (I'm not kidding) and I tell my new wife there is no way he's coming back with -- OMG, there it is!

Dusty old case from spending decades in his attic, barely playable (would have made a good slide guitar) but same color and everything except his has a Guildsby (mine was the 2 so no vibrato). I was fully in love with it, my dad just gave it to me, I took it home, took it to the best luthier I know and spent a few bucks getting the neck reset and some other restoration work done. This guitar has vibe for days!

It's a 1966 so it has the mini-humbuckers. The neck pickup is beautiful for jazz but the bridge pickup is thin and twangy. They are actually mismatched. I believe they are identical which makes the neck quite a bit louder than the bridge (I guess they hadn't figured out that bridge pickups have to be wound hotter to keep up in 1966!) The bridge sounds great by itself as you could probably tell from the recordings but live I always had to kick on a boost pedal when I went to the back pickup for leads. Still, it's a great guitar and of course I'll never sell it. But a Gretsch it ain't!

13

Great story and a very cool guitar! That Guild is a keeper for sure! You'll love your new Gretsch also, they are addictive. My first Gretsch was a 6120-60, which I bought new in 1997. Wanted one ever since I saw Setzer when I didn't even play guitar myself. I still remember getting home from the music store and opening the case, man what a great feeling!

Enjoy your new guitar and of course, welcome!

14

Welcome aboard,congrats on the new geet,ya can't beat a 6120,a have a thing for them myself.

Soon you'll be wanting that 55 too .

15

Hey Tony, glad you stepped up to post after being a member since 2016.

It pangs me to hear that you waited so long to go the direction of Gretsch just based on price. The G54** series are great guitars at an affordable price. Pro line is definitely the way to go but the budget line are incredible guitars in their own right. If you happen to go back to the music store at least try them out. You may be filling your stable full, if you do.

And yes, pic's please.

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I wish this forum let you at least give a like to posts. There are several here I've wanted to react to but let's just say I'm looking forward to getting to know you all!

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See the zero with up and down arrows under each post? Up for like. Down for don't.

Welcome to Gretsch. It's the voice many of us didn't know we were looking for, until we found it.

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See the zero with up and down arrows under each post? Up for like. Down for don't.

Welcome to Gretsch. It's the voice many of us didn't know we were looking for, until we found it.

– Proteus

Smacks forehead, ugh, thank you!

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Just wanted to take a moment to report back. The 6120 arrived at 9:30 this morning, I spent 2 hours playing pretty much everything I know including songs I haven’t played in years (and only half remember!) It’s everything you guys said it would be. I feel like after 40 years of searching I have finally found my voice. I also had a shocking thought: I could literally sell every other guitar I own now, they’re all superfluous. Not that they don’t all have different sounds, they do, but this is the only one I need. I’ve never felt that way before.

If we weren’t in this damned pandemic I would be on Craigs List right now looking for a new band to join, my mind is blown!

20

Congrats. The day I got my 6120-59LTV was the best day ever.

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Congrats on your guitar, I'm glad you found a guitar that you feel made all your other guitar superfluous. Although, hold on to that '66 Guild! I love my 6120T '55VS. I've had it for about a year now and it gets better all the time!

The guys on this forum will be really helpful in helping you navigate the Gretsch waters:) Welcome aboard.

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Tony, it really tickles me to read how much you’re enjoying that guitar. It can only get better as you play it in!

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Great choice and glad you love it!

24

Great story. Love the 6120. I also love Guilds, especially those made in Hoboken. I have a 61 Capri. Welcome aboard. Congrats on your first Gretsch. Don’t think it will be your last.

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Welcome, tonys145, to the best guitar related site on the internet! I'm fairly new to Gretsch (3 years), and I just bought my second one, a 6131T Firebird Duo Jet. My first one is a 5422TG, a double cut hollow body Electromatic that I'm in the process of upgrading with TV Jones Classic pickups and wiring harness. I have all the parts, I just haven't done the deed yet.

I kind of wish I had started out with the exact same guitar that you just bought. It's the one that I have designated to be my third Gretsch. It's not that I don't like the 5422TG, I do very much, it's just that I wish I had put the dough I have into it into a 6120 - 59.

Anyhow, welcome aboard, I'm glad you found us. There are a lot of very good and knowledgeable people here, who keep me coming back for a daily dose of the GDP. I'm happy for you, there's nothing like that first Gretsch guitar, and you started out with a the top of the line model. The Pro-Line has exquisite craftsmanship, and really are all that the hype would suggest.


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