Modern Gretsch Guitars

My Gretsch has ruined me for other guitars

1

So I have always had one primary guitar but would still play my second guitar often, and every now and then pick up my third guitar. For most of the last 15 years I have been a Tele guy with a Strat as my second, while my Gretsch lived in a closet. A couple of years ago I found this site and learned all the reasons I was frustrated with my 6119 and then went about correcting them all.

After a Serpentune, new TVJ wiring harness and a pair of Duo Trons I am unable to get excited about any of my other guitars. I think the Serpentune is especially guilty because now the action is just amazing (in addition to the improved tone).

I tried playing my super cool Tele tonight and just couldn't get into it, so back in the case it went. The Strat has not had any love in ages now.

I thought I wanted a Pro Jet but I spent a couple of hours with a few at the shop last night and in spite of how cool they are I started asking myself do I really want to put down my 6119 to play a Pro Jet, or ANY other guitar?

I still like the orange Gretsch hollow body (any model) and might get one of the affordable ones one day, but I'm not sure why other than I like they way they look. It might just collect dust though, or I might put in some single coils and enjoy having two hollow bodies with a different tone. THAT might be the ticket. Maybe.

My improved 6119 has really spoiled me in that it does everything I want it to do and nothing else compares and in order to play another guitar I have to put this one down and I just don't want to put it down.

I have a Martin and Guild (USA) acoustics and I have no problem putting one down for the other. But when it comes to electrics I just can't put down my Gretsch.

Anyhow, I have no idea what the purpose of this post is other than to slobber over my guitar. And to think it probably lived in my closet for over a decade.

Y'all like pictures so here is the guitar, my wife and daughter performing in Dallas. That is not an extra leg coming out of my backside, but a drummer who I'm blocking in the photo. Our steel player was off to the other side.

2

Looks like AllGood - great venue. Glad you are digging your Gretsch.

4

Your plight is faily common. That's what happens with a Gretsch. Players who've never had the experience don't know what they're missing.

5

I tend to have phases of playing a Gretsch over a Stratocaster, I use the Gretsch for live playing with swing band and function band, the answer is to keep a core of guitars and play them for the music they suit.

6

I tend to have phases of playing a Gretsch over a Stratocaster, I use the Gretsch for live playing with swing band and function band, the answer is to keep a core of guitars and play them for the music they suit.

– Matt66

Great advice and exactly what I do. I don't have any pedals except for a Wah so the guitar has to bring the tone!

7

You're preachin' to the chior, on this forum brother.

8

Nicely written, Christopher. I enjoyed that.

May I make a suggestion: Sell your Tele, sell your Strat and get a Dyna Jet with a Bigsby. You'll have the single coils of the Telecaster, the vibrato of the Strat, some extra space in your guitar place... and another Gretsch. Just saying.

9

I'm in the opposite camp. My telecaster that Josh built has (almost) ruined my Gretsch love.

The BZ and 3967 still get some love, but the others are wall art.

10

Ah, Bob! Say it ain't so!

11

They have that effect. I sold off my perfectly good Yamaha 6 and 12 string when I got my first Gretsch; I just loved the acoustic sound of my '56 6120 -- and then I got to plug in.

12

I've been that way for sometime, I much prefer one of my hollow body Gretches to my Teles, I haven't had a Tele out of a case for way over a year!

13

I have more Gretsches than anything else. My favorite depends on the day, but it’s definitely Gretsch for me.

14

The thing is my Gretsch is just so dang playable. It's like the neck is flat or something, and the arc of the Serpentune just makes it that much more playable. I've had one of my Stratocasters in the hands of three different luthiers and I still don't like the action much, I'm super picky. I am NOT criticizing Strats in any way, no doubt I'm taking it to the wrong people to work on it. But dang the play-ability of my Gretsch could not be any better.

And as far as tone goes it really likes my jacked up $200 Excelsior (that I have sunk an extra $200 or more in).

I love my Tele and I don't see ever parting with it and as I mentioned before I might get another Gretsch hollow body and at some point and add some single coils so they both don't sound the same. The upper end "Jets" look cool too.

Anyhow...I can't stop fiddling with stuff and the dang thing stays in tune so I'm not going change out the tuning keys, but I might add a pearl pick guard one day. They appear to sell for $70 online. Is it me or does that seem a little crazy?

15

This has happened to me too with my 2011 DSV Duo Jet. The neck feels perfect, I added an aluminum Tru-Arc Serpentune, a brass nut and I flipped the Dynasonics around so the poles are facing the inside instead of the outside. The only way the Gretsch Custom Shop could make me a more suitable guitar than the Duo Jet I already play would be if they fully chambered it like a Guild Aristocrat. It plays exactly how I want it to and it sounds exactly like the sound I've been chasing in my head forever. I used 3 other guitars in the studio recently, an Epiphone Casino, a Fender Blacktop Jazzmaster HS and my original design Freestyle Del Rey guitar panned to the right to supplement my Duo Jet which is on every track panned to the left. The Duo Jet provides the foundation tone.

16

I've always thought the plain G6119 was one of the best secrets of the early FMIC era. Have fun playing it.

Lee

17

The guitar looks great, as does your cool-gray haircut.

I've been to All Good many, many times...fun place, but I've never played there.

...------

18

I know what you mean. I've had many great guitars over the years, but felt lost when I didn't have a Gretsch. I'll get the jones for a Strat or Les Paul occasionally, but it quickly passes.

Dallas (and Texas, in general) looks pretty fun. Always hearing of good venues on here and on FB.

19

Well maybe I spoke too soon. I'm starting to feel like life is too short to only own one Gretsch , so I've been fiddling with 5420ts at my local Sam Ash and doing budgets in my head because I'd have to upgrade some bits and such. Plus my wife and daughter would enjoy playing it.

I mean it would be such a practical purchase. And even if I bought a 5420t and my 6119 still gets the majority of the love, I already own extra Strat that has not gotten any love in ages. Someone in my town would play the heck out of the Strat that is no doubt overcome with loneliness and feels rejected.

If I'm going to own two of the same, or near the same, I might as well own two Gretsches versus two Strats, Strats that are getting no love, right? So sell a Strat to buy another Gretsch really makes sense, don't you think?

*Side note, I notice the more active I am on this site the more money I spend. The more money I spend (on Gretschy stuff) the more I play, the better I sound, and the happier I am. Weird how that happens.

20

I sold a Strat to help fund my Duo Jet. I personally prefer the 5422 over the 5420.


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