Miscellaneous Rumbles

1944 Gretsch Uke Book - with Ocarina Duets!


I stumbled into this little gem recently. It's beat up but I don't think anyone has seen one before. It's clearly aimed at servicemen as can be seen on the cover. Looks to be the same cover artist as the Gretsch Cowboy Songbook of 1945, but this uke book was published in 1944. I posted it here as opposed to "other Gretsch string-y things" due to the high ocarina content.


Here is the inside cover. The fourth paragraph is a hoot: "no-one will be a Bach, Beethoven and Brahms " from studying the uke. The tiny text under the authors name states that he is currently serving in the Army.


Here is how to play the distinct Gretsch uke, again with an illustration of a serviceman.


Here are the notes, not just for a duet, but a trio with uke and two ocarinas. Have at it, kids!


The inside back cover, touting the whole package, available at your px.


Wonderful, I love old sheet music. Come on Gretsch, this should be in the gigbag of every uke!


And finally the back cover, plugging the ocarina. What's of interest is the typographic treatment of the "Gretsch Ocarinas." This may be the first time we see the Gretsch t-roof logotype with it's 1940's streamlined typography in use. This would become standard for Gretsch in the following post-war years through today. It's the same "G" we see in the G-arrow knobs.


Nice time capsule. An uke or an ocarina or a harmonica was about all a typical serviceman could carry along with a duffle bag or sea bag.


That's great! Love the illustrations. Thanks for posting. Going to grab my uke...


Cool thread. Thanks for sharing.

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