Modern Gretsch Guitars

Love for the Tennessee Rose!

26

There was also the Tennessee Special with short scale, zero fret, 2.5" body depth and a very attractive deep red finish. I chose to sell mine, but miss it from time to time.

– Caliban335

My first Gretsch, and it was also my introduction to all you fine people as I was researching it. In fact, I found my guitar and it's serial number already in the database!

Not sure if it was yours, Caliban, but I found mine in the Noe Valley area of SF.

27

If there was ever an "ooops" long scale SP...

28

If my marginal understanding of history is correct the Tennessean was the original model (single pickup. budget model) and was a Chet Atkins model. When Chet left Gretsch they re-branded it the Tennessee Rose. A few T Rose variations were made during the Baldwin, post Baldwin and Fender eras.

Feel free to kick me in the pants if I have it wrong.

And did I read someone correctly, they discontinued the Tennessee Rose? Both models?

– Mr_Christopher

There's a large gap in your knowledge. The Tennessean may have began as a single pup but enjoyed most of it's success as the double pup model in the '60's, and through the '70's Baldwin era as well. While the 6120 and Gent went the Electrotone DC route, the Tennessean remained an SC.

Gretsch never used the name Tennessee Rose as they didn't have to. They owned the name Tennessean till they went out of business, which is when Chet quit, going to Gibson shortly thereafter.

The Tennessee Rose name was used when Gretsch went back into business in the late '80's as they no longer owned the name, Gibson did. Same for the Country Classic used for the Country Gent.

29

My first Gretsch, and it was also my introduction to all you fine people as I was researching it. In fact, I found my guitar and it's serial number already in the database!

Not sure if it was yours, Caliban, but I found mine in the Noe Valley area of SF.

– Rhythmisking

The serial number on my SP was JT03-063255.

30

Didn't Baxter start a thread a few years back about the Rose? Not sure, but I think he said it was the quintessential Gretsch??? BTW I love my 2007. It's my favorite.

31

The serial number on my SP was JT03-063255.

– Caliban335

Mine's a JF (Fujigen)

32

My dream CS guitar would be a melding of a Rose and a Country Club.

Take a 2.25" deep 17" Country Club body. Stain it in the dark 6119SP red.

Thin nitro laquer buffed to semi-gloss, closer to matte than gloss.

25.5" neck, DE profile, with unbound ebony board with zero fret and neo-classic thumbnails. 9.5" radius.

Unbound smaller headstock with scripty logo, stained to match body.

Nickel hardware.

No pickguard.

Tru-Arc serpentune in aluminum.

V-cut Bigsby with DE handle.

Tone knob circuit.

Either T-armond or vintage Dyna in the neck. T-90 or Ray Butts Ful-Fidelity Filter in the bridge in a DeArmond Mount (for the RBFFF, it would need to be special ordered) in nickel, or the Industrial Velvet finish that is regularly available only for the Duo-Tron.

So, if anyone has a few grand lying around and would like to see this come to pass...

33

I got to play a used 2004 Tennessee Rose today. I didn’t plug it in. It was well worn in but is in good shape. It appears to have been played a lot. It felt fantastic and sounded great acoustically. I’ve been drawn to the 25.5” scale length sound of a Falcon lately and thought this guitar may also be 25.5”. As soon as I got home I looked up the specs here. It turns out it is. I’ll be thinking about this one tonight. If I can find time I may have to test drive it through an amp tomorrow. Uh oh...!

34

Yessir, that was a uniquely spec'ed TRose: true f-holes, 25.5 scale, slightly modernized control matrix. It was kinda Gretsch's near approach to the Players Edition concept at the time, with some specs and features "rationalized" to make sense to players unused to Gretsch quirks, but retaining all the stuff that assures Gretsch tone. (Like true floating bridge and the neck geometry to go with it.)

To me it was the right compromise, and the PEs go too far for my taste. That model wasn't made for long. Always thought I should get one, and I always didn't.

There haven't been many real-f-hole thin hollowbody Electrotones at 25.5" scale - if any others. Special guitar. You should snap it up.

35

Yes I agree it is a very special guitar. It was so much fun to play! Does anyone know what years came with these specs?

  • 25.5" scale
  • No zero fret
  • Real f holes

The ebony fretboard was a big bonus too but not as necessary. It felt so good!

36

When it comes down to it the main spec I'm concerned with is the 25.5" scale length. Would that be the case for FMIC Gretsch builds from 2003 - 2015 or so?

37

When I first noticed the 25.5" T-Rose, there were two other Roses in the lineup. The 25.5 was just plain 6119; there was also the 6119-1962 (Hilos, 24.6, closed body) and the 6119-FT (Filters, 24.6, closed body).

I didn't notice when the 25.5 scale modernized plainol 6119 came into the line, or when it left. But it's certainly not the case that all FMIC T-Roses were 25.5" scale, not even for a little while - and certainly not for a decade or more.

If shopping the model, you'll have to be very diligent, as sellers won't necessarily know what they have. Open f-holes should be a dead giveaway, and the lack of a mud switch. I'd still ask a seller to measure the scale length.

Frinstance, there's on Reverb now (https://reverb.com/item/381...), from 2001. Open effers, no mudder, might be the McCoy. No mention of scale length in the description, of course. And it does show that the model pre-dated FMIC.


The recent Players Edition model is similar - open effers, no mud switch (plus string-thru Bigsby and no-load this-n-that blah blah) - but has ML bracing and, crucially, is 24.6" scale.

I have no objection to ML bracing, which may - when deployed in an otherwise empty thinline body - provide an ideal point along the continuum from an all-hollow tone box to a solidbody. But it is different from the tone-post construction of the 25.5" 6119 - and "ideal" can only be defined by the tonehound chasing the tone.

38

When I first noticed the 25.5" T-Rose, there were two other Roses in the lineup. The 25.5 was just plain 6119; there was also the 6119-1962 (Hilos, 24.6, closed body) and the 6119-FT (Filters, 24.6, closed body).

I didn't notice when the 25.5 scale modernized plainol 6119 came into the line, or when it left. But it's certainly not the case that all FMIC T-Roses were 25.5" scale, not even for a little while - and certainly not for a decade or more.

If shopping the model, you'll have to be very diligent, as sellers won't necessarily know what they have. Open f-holes should be a dead giveaway, and the lack of a mud switch. I'd still ask a seller to measure the scale length.

Frinstance, there's on Reverb now (https://reverb.com/item/381...), from 2001. Open effers, no mudder, might be the McCoy. No mention of scale length in the description, of course. And it does show that the model pre-dated FMIC.


The recent Players Edition model is similar - open effers, no mud switch (plus string-thru Bigsby and no-load this-n-that blah blah) - but has ML bracing and, crucially, is 24.6" scale.

I have no objection to ML bracing, which may - when deployed in an otherwise empty thinline body - provide an ideal point along the continuum from an all-hollow tone box to a solidbody. But it is different from the tone-post construction of the 25.5" 6119 - and "ideal" can only be defined by the tonehound chasing the tone.

– Proteus

I also love the tone post sound. I've been trying to search for Youtube videos and have found a few. I'm thinking the tone post with the 25.5" scale is the key to the tone I'm chasing.

39

The Tenny Rose with open effers, 25.5" scale, and tone post was one of the earliest Modern Gretsches. I don't know when the historically correct HiLo Electrotone body came along, whether it was pre-FMIC or not.

40

My '05 Tenny is from the Vintage Select line (as opposed to the Players Edition). It doesn't get the play it deserves, but it's so darned gorgeous and sounds so glorious, I won't part with it. It's still like new.

Admittedly it was an acquisition inspired by George Harrison, but it's impressive just how popular the 6119 was back in the 60s. Especially in the UK. If you bought a Gretsch to play in your pop combo, seems it was more likely a Tennessean than anything else. I have watched hours and hours of old live performances, episodes of Beat Club (which came out of Bremen Germany), Hullaballoo, Shindig, .. it's stunning how many of these guys at one point were wielding a 6119. They were ubiquitous back then.

41

.. and of course you can shred on a Tenny, if that is your 'jam';

42

The base TR has been the sleeper modern Gretsch forever. It’s pretty much the only open 16” with a 25.5 scale, and it’s had those specs since the 90s. It’s was specced wrong, but in a great way. I’d look for a 2000s version with alnico Filters.

43

In the two years since this thread began I bought a Tennessee Special to replace the one I'd foolishly sold. It came with a set of Setzer Signature pickups which I've come to appreciate in comparison to TV Classics; not necessarily better, but different in a good way.

44

That sounds about right (in respect to the single pickup version). I have a pickguard from one, thinking I might have used it on one of my TR's, but don't feel like I should change them. I have a 1996 and a 1994 '62 reissue. Love both of them.

45

I like mine a lot! Good with any amp. Good with any song too. Clean/not so clean. It's a keeper.

It does have a TruArc bridge.

46

My '05 Tenny is from the Vintage Select line (as opposed to the Players Edition). It doesn't get the play it deserves, but it's so darned gorgeous and sounds so glorious, I won't part with it. It's still like new.

Admittedly it was an acquisition inspired by George Harrison, but it's impressive just how popular the 6119 was back in the 60s. Especially in the UK. If you bought a Gretsch to play in your pop combo, seems it was more likely a Tennessean than anything else. I have watched hours and hours of old live performances, episodes of Beat Club (which came out of Bremen Germany), Hullaballoo, Shindig, .. it's stunning how many of these guys at one point were wielding a 6119. They were ubiquitous back then.

– Edison

We have quite a few 2005 Tennessee Rose 1962-HT models in the residents of the Gretsch Pages. It is a great guitar with a great sound.

Edison, I may be mistaken but I don't think they used the terms Vintage Select or Player's Edition back in 2005. I believe that they are of more recent coinage.

But your comment, "but it's so darned gorgeous and sounds so glorious" is spot on.

48

Here's mine.

– Proteus

Brilliant! I imagine 3 pickup HiLotron quack must be a sound to behold. I bet it's smooth and translucent like melted butter. I could see this guitar being extremely versatile.

49

Here is my VS Tenny . . .

50

The Triple Tenny is indeed pretty sweet. It's wired to get any pickup combination, and I've always been happy with it. I like it best with flatwounds.


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