Vintage Gretsch Guitars

no one is goin’ for this Princess

1

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Fa...

As much as I liked the whole Vette/Twist/Princess/Duke scene they all had a 14" (flat) radius or at least the ones I had. This one has been up here a long time

4

I'm not suggesting the price is unreasonable... but the reality is that $2800 can buy you a LOT of (modern) Gretsch guitar these days, and at the end of the day the Princess is still just a tarted-up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby. I'm sure it will sell because it's complete and in good shape... but the seller will have to be patient for that buyer to surface.

5

Ed is right - there is a buyer for that guitar somewhere. And though I doubt I could get $200 for it, this thread gives me a chance to post a pic of my favorite tarted up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby.

6

I’ll never again look at a Princess or a Twist without thinking “tarted up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby.”

7

I’ll never again look at a Princess or a Twist without thinking “tarted up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby.”

– fieldhdj

Ha! As usual I was shooting from the hip, and was not intending to disrespect the guitar or the design. Lord knows I'm a huge fan of the Gretsch Company's "tarting-up" abilities in the Golden Era!

8

Tone Twisters and Floating Sound Unit maybe were some of the tarting.

But were all Vettes and derivative models that flatter neck radius ?

9

Tone Twisters and Floating Sound Unit maybe were some of the tarting.

But were all Vettes and derivative models that flatter neck radius ?

– DCBirdMan

I would guess that they had a spec for neck radius for each model, and whatever variation we find can be attributed to the variability of any process that depends on humans.

10

Objection: The term “only one pickup” is leading and discriminatory. The jury should disregard that term in their deliberations. Proceed.

11

Objection: The term “only one pickup” is leading and discriminatory. The jury should disregard that term in their deliberations. Proceed.

– nielDa

12

Ed is right - there is a buyer for that guitar somewhere. And though I doubt I could get $200 for it, this thread gives me a chance to post a pic of my favorite tarted up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby.

– fieldhdj

Yeah But, you’re getting real Honduran mahogany and Brazilian Rosewood!

13

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14

I'm not suggesting the price is unreasonable... but the reality is that $2800 can buy you a LOT of (modern) Gretsch guitar these days, and at the end of the day the Princess is still just a tarted-up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby. I'm sure it will sell because it's complete and in good shape... but the seller will have to be patient for that buyer to surface.

– kc_eddie_b

Both unfeatures are a plus for me. But that does not make me a buyer

15

"Princesses" that have an overly-inflated sense of their own value are a bad choice, whether we're talking guitars or humans.

16

"Princesses" that have an overly-inflated sense of their own value are a bad choice, whether we're talking guitars or humans.

– Parabar

I agree. The only Princess I have well related to was an Ungar soldering iron.

17

Ed is right - there is a buyer for that guitar somewhere. And though I doubt I could get $200 for it, this thread gives me a chance to post a pic of my favorite tarted up Corvette with only one pickup and no Bigsby.

– fieldhdj

Curiosity question about the single pickup Corvettes and princess. I see the dog ear P90 in your Corvette. Given the Honduran mahogany and Brazilian rosewood used, with this guitar hold its own against the Les Paul junior from the same era tone wise? If indeed it does, one could get Junior tones at a fraction of the cost of the real deal Les Paul junior. Ruminations on a Tuesday afternoon.

18

Garshk, not only does yon Pwincess have only one pickup, but it's one-a-them-thar HiLoTrons, which have a little bit of highs, a little bit of lows, and nothing in the middle.

Why did "student," "entry-range", or "girl's" guitar once mean something that looks more or less like a real electric guitar, but is so underpowered and even disabled that it had small chance of sounding like one?

That marketing position doesn't seem to have come about in the 50s, when "low-end" guitars might not have got two pickups, but at least they got the same pickup as their more expensive brethren. By casual recollection, I'm thinking it happened in the early 60s. Exhibit C (or deeper in the alphabet) is this Princess: Exhibit A would be the Fender Music Master (why not Music Miss?) with that...er...rather anemic single-coil; for Exhibit B, look no further than the Gibson Melody Maker (why did double-M mean cheapest-we-got? A play on McDonald's golden arches?) with its abomination of a tinkly clinky single that did Fender the imitative flattery (or was it irony?) of looking more like a Fender pickup than Gibson.

(This low-end-means-wimpy-pickup argument falls completely apart when we get to Rickenbacker, whose best efforts simply doubled-and-tripled up on the Aristotelian ideal of Wimpy Pickup - but cost as much as real guitars.)

And yeah, yeah, I know, HiLoTrons are fine pickups when properly ampified, I agree. At least on a hollowbody (of some dimension), in pairs or more. But the staunchest, wool-dyedest, most righteous HiLo Twoo Bewiever will have to admit that a single HiLo...on a thin slab...played through the cheapest entry-level amp Young Rockette's parents were prepared to let her have...could not have been a recipe for musical satisfaction. No wonder the bright, heartening surge of female guitarists we now enjoy didn't happen in the 60s. How many young rocker-grrrl's dreams of musical purpose were bludgeoned (or rather plinky-dinked) to futility by such guitars?

And who will stand up to defend the MusicMaster pickup, or the Melody Maker's original equipment?

The heck of it is that all three guitars are great platforms - as Mustangs, modded Melody Makers, and double-barreled Vettes proved.

Short-sighted marketing decisions on the part of the industry.

By pure dumb luck (and paternal parsimony), by contrast my first electric was cheap, Japanese, and totally tasteless - but it came with not one not two not even three but four-countem-four single-coils. Hot single-coils, too. The sonic variety I found by playing with those rocker switches and knobs, along with satisfactory levels of drive into any amp, played a huge role in my ongoing fascination/obsession with electric guitar, and is foundational to the way I understand and use the instrument.

Beginner guitarists have it so much better in these days of modern times.


I see someone bought that Princess. Nostalgia is powerful force.

19

Curiosity question about the single pickup Corvettes and princess. I see the dog ear P90 in your Corvette. Given the Honduran mahogany and Brazilian rosewood used, with this guitar hold its own against the Les Paul junior from the same era tone wise? If indeed it does, one could get Junior tones at a fraction of the cost of the real deal Les Paul junior. Ruminations on a Tuesday afternoon.

Hah! Interesting counterpoint to the post I was working on at the same time. I can't answer for Doug - or for vintage Corvettes - but I can get to an answer to your question by triangulation. Based on my Honduran mahogany 60s Melody Maker (modded in the early 70s with a humbucker and early DiMarzio Fat Strat single), and my experience with the current Mega(?)Tron-equipped CVT - both of which sound magnificent - I'd say absolutely so.

That is, IF the Corvette had the same pickup as the Junior. The platforms are certainly similar enough, deriving from the same tonal recipe. Thus we note Doug has the P-90 on his guitar, which makes it SO much more than it would be, dying a strangled death of asphyxiation trying to breathe through a single HiLo. I mean, I'd want two P-90s on a 'Vette - but at least even with "just the one," it's a real guitar.

Rather than the whitewashed facsimile of a guitar the HiLo renders it.

(No, I'm not being completely fair. With enough amplification, even a single HiLo, at the bridge position of a PrinVette, can deliever at least some of the goods.)

20

Curiosity question about the single pickup Corvettes and princess. I see the dog ear P90 in your Corvette. Given the Honduran mahogany and Brazilian rosewood used, with this guitar hold its own against the Les Paul junior from the same era tone wise? If indeed it does, one could get Junior tones at a fraction of the cost of the real deal Les Paul junior. Ruminations on a Tuesday afternoon.

– LarryR

Worked for Rory Gallagher.


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