Miscellaneous Rumbles

After 47-Years…


Congratulations Joe! Enjoy your retirement. You deserve it.


"And more from Abbey Road: your embrace of Javier, Danilo Fiani of Brazil, and Peter Conrad, placing them on the roster of endorsed artists, made a difference in their music careers. If they were here on the GDP, they'd tell you so. The association means so much to them, both personally and professionally."

(Written for us by Proteus.)


Peter Conrad, Danilo Fiani. Fernando Duarte. Steve Sizemore, Joe Orlando. Javier Ojeda, Gavin Leslie Pring, Hal Bruce. All Gretsch endorsed Artist Joe found & nurtured over the years.

Re: "And more from Abbey Road: your embrace of Javier, Danilo Fiani of Brazil, and Peter Conrad, placing them on the roster of endorsed artists, made a difference in their music careers. If they were here on the GDP, they'd tell you so. The association means so much to them, both personally and professionally."


Well earned rest and well earned honors from your peers, friends, fans and foes alike. Who could ask for more? Now get into your studio and start pickin...


Congrats to Joe, the best friend Gretsch lovers could ever have. Your integrity and enthusiasm will never be matched. I've never met a more genuine person than you. I'm so glad I got to take part in the last tour of the Fender headquarters you gave before the virus halted them. ( I'll bet it took awhile to remove all the memorabilia from your office ) Best of luck in your future endeavors. Hope to see you at a future roundup. If your corporate contact info is no longer valid, please let us know how to keep in touch, if you so desire. Thanks again for all you've done for us.


Only ever heard wonderful things about Joe! Al the best for your retirement, sir!


Joe! Congrats!!!!

I'll keep it short. Working with you was literally a dream come true and a high point in my musical career. Thank you so much for the chance to represent my favorite guitars!


Joe, enjoy every minute of your well-earned retirement, and I sure hope we can still lift a glass at a Roundup soon.


Well deserved, enjoy.

And boy, will your successor have some shoes to fill.


Well deserved, enjoy.

And boy, will your successor have some shoes to fill.

– Gerry Ratrod

No kidding, thems some big shoes


Hey Joe, where you goin' with that fishin' pole in your hand?

Sorry for the belated message, but I wanted to wait till you'd had a (former) workday of retirement under your G-brand belt...and I wanted to compose my thoughts. I mean, you know. What can I possibly say?

I knew it was coming - it had to come - and I don't for a second begrudge you a minute of the rest I hope you're going to slow down and take now. But it can't help but feel a little like the end of an era...in a year that feels a little like the end of Life as We Knew It.

Gretsch without Joe Carducci: it's a little hard to imagine. I suspect that in the long run of Gretsch history (and long may it run), the company has never had a more dedicated and effective in-house champion, nor a more engaging and compelling public face. Not even Jimmie Webster.

It's something to be proud of. But your entire career with Fender is something to be proud of. From the very beginning, when, right out of high school, you went to work soldering amps on the line - working with many of the first generation of Fender legends. Just think back on that. The company wasn't 47 years old when you started. You've been there, in the trenches, through good times and bad, through more than half of the company's history. You're a priceless repository of the tales and the culture of THE definitive American MI company.

Man, the memories and images you must have. The jobs you've done: doing your best to run quality control on 70s Strats (and having rejects shipped behind your back when you went to lunch). Service-managing Rhodes pianos in their heydays, and working on Chick Corea's and Ray Charles' instruments. The legends you've stood shoulder-to-shoulder with, doing everything in your power to serve their needs with Fender's product.

Being one of the hardy loyalists who opted to move to Arizona when Bill Schultz engineered the employee buyout from CBS - where Fender wouldn't even have a factory in the US. Dark days for Fender - but true to your spirit and the best intentions of the new regime, you looked ahead and saw a brighter future, then worked to make it come true.

All the jobs you've done and all the hats you've worn in the decades before Gretsch came under FMIC's purview. Product-managing Fender and Squier projects, doing the detail work of procurement and logistics: whatever was needed. Fender management, as it changed through the years, learned they could always rely on you. And that's down to your fundamental attitude and temperament, which have taught me so much and proved an example to try to emulate: see the positive, be more than fair to everyone, tell plain truth with respect and kindness (even when it's bad news), and give every project the fullest measure you can bring to it.

FMIC could not have done better than to turn the reins of Gretsch over to you in 2007, after Mike Lewis did his stellar work in laying the foundation. For 13 years (that Hipster Hangout in South Bend was in November), you've given 100% and then some to Gretsch, always with sincerity, enthusiasm, and complete authenticity. You love the guitars, you love the music, you love the people, and you - mostly - loved the job.

Tireless. Unbelievable schedules, traveling to events nearly every weekend. The airports and rental cars, all the connections and logistics, schlepping around the booth and the product, setup and teardown - first there, last to leave. Always a smile. Always treating everyone as though they were the most important person in the room. It's not that little people felt big when you turned the Joe light their way: it's that, to you, we're all big.

And that's the real voodoo there: your natural regard for, interest in, commitment to people. That can't be faked. Maybe onstage, or "on the job," by some people, most of the time. But many of us have been around you through all hours of the day and night, offstage and off the job, and it's still there.

Your pitch-perfect presentations, the bottomless generosity, the wit and the humor and the warmth...we kinda knew how lucky we were to be on the receiving end through these past 13 years, and that we were witnessing a golden age, making indelible memories that would resonate through the rest of our lives. Looking back now, the technicolor vibrancy of those moments are burnished with a golden glow. We'll wonder sometimes "could it really have been that special?" And then we'll remember that it was.

All those events, those long weekends, the epic adventures, the long-table meals in eateries nationwide, surrounded by a brotherhood (and sisterhood) where we felt like knights at King Arthur's court - all brought to us by Joe Carducci.

To say thank you hardly cuts it. But you don't like a big fuss. (And that's all Joe, all over - you didn't want the spotlight on you. It wasn't about you. It was always about others. If the world was filled with Joe Carduccis, there would be no war, no conflict, no hunger, no want.)

OK, no fuss. But I can't not testify to your impact on my life, personally. The opportunities you made available, the people I've met through those connections, your early endorsement of Tru-Arc and your advocacy for it at FMIC, the many kindnesses over the years, the lucky privilege of getting so much hang time during long drives and through events. The sense of belonging to a community that means something, of being a small part of the life and legend of Gretsch. Many people we meet in our lives have an impact great or small, deflect our paths a little. Others make a larger difference, and some change our lives. I'm not exaggerating when I say you're one of a handful in my life who have changed it for the better.

And I know I'm not the only one.

So, no fuss. Just, you know. How's it going? Never a dull moment.

You've had a career you can be deeply and justly proud of, and please do take some satisfaction in knowing how many positive ripples you've put out into the world, just doing your job the way it came naturally to you to do it. It's a lucky man who can do so much good while doing what he loves.

So now. I've been doing this retirement thing in a gradual way for most of the year, and I've been so busy doing whatever I want that I wonder how I ever found time for a job. I don't have time for that! I got a life to live.

I hope it will be the same for you. We'll miss you as the welcoming official face of Gretsch, but your hard work has set the plates spinning and it doesn't look like they're going to wobble anytime soon. I'll take you at your word that you're still going to be around here, and at Roundups - as one of us. I'm sure I speak for all when I say we're looking forward to that.

Love ya, brother. Can't thank you enough - for everything.

Now go catch some fish.


47 years! Amazing!

Thank you SO MUCH for your contribution here and to the beloved Gretsch name and reputation. You rock!


Congratulations...met you at the KC Roundup and you made it a great experience (along with several other Gretschies!).

Hope your retirement goes as well as mine...I can't even imagine ever having to go to work again...and, I actually liked my job!

Stay healthy and enjoy every minute!


congrats to joe c on a lifetime of dedication

someday they'll be evaluating gretsch guitars as carducci era and post carducci era!!! hah

best of luck



Joe, your trips to the Canadian Great White North Gretsch events in Kingston were the stuff of legend. You would fly up, a cache of Gretsch swag, and your personality would fill the day with boundless enthusiasm, with the love of all things Gretsch, and you would leave with countless new friends. We are all honoured to call you friend, and we wish you a lifetime of well-earned relaxation. We hope our paths continue to cross.


Congratulations on your retirement. You took Gretsch to where they have never been . Your dedication and involvement will not be forgotten. You changed lives and helped promote good will and happiness for many people. Always remember that. Thank you!


47 years... that's a Veteran's day.All the best, Joe!


Congratulations Joe! Anyone who spends time around here is familiar with your legendary customer service. 47 years of service is a remarkable achievement - particularly in this industry. Enjoy your retirement and hope to meet you one day.


Congrats Joe! As many have suggested, it's undoubtedly true that the success and market share Gretsch currently enjoys would not be HALF of what it is were it not for you and what you've done as Gretsch's most powerful ambassador.

It's always difficult to trace a direct line from marketing efforts to sales, but the goodwill you have spread so generously throughout the many communities of Gretsch aficionados has grown and born fruit in a way most marketing campaigns could only dream of.

You did that by being who you are.

You've spread love, and you deserve all of it and more right back at ya.

Thank you.

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