Port Jefferson Station, NY (July 8, 2019) -- Supro has recreated one of the most iconic guitars from its long, storied history: the Ozark. Most famous as Jimi Hendrix’s first electric (purchased in about 1959 at Myers Music Shop in Seattle by Jimi’s father Al), the late-50’s Ozark is also renowned as a slide guitar. Historically accurate body dimensions and 25” scale length—as well as the signature pinstripe line art from the original instrument—have all been meticulously recreated in this limited-edition Ozark for 2019.
Given the opportunity to re-imagine the Ozark, Supro has taken a number of steps to improve the playability and intonation of the original design while still capturing the sound of this classic American guitar. In the new version, a string-through-body hardtail bridge is mounted directly to the steel control plate, allowing individual intonation of each string while delivering the robust sustain of the original instrument. The new model features a black satin-finished maple neck that is glued into a mahogany body at the 14th fret, preserving the geometry of this iconic guitar while vastly improving its playability and tuning stability. A custom-made Aluma 90 pickup developed for Supro by Lace Music captures the tonal splendor of the original Valco lap steel pickup, while eliminating the physical limitations of the vintage string-through design. The new Ozark delivers unmistakable Supro tone in an instrument that can be set up and intonated like a modern guitar, yet still sounds and feels like a vintage classic.
In order to capture the sonic glory of this WWII-era pickup design, Supro worked with Lace Music to recreate the sought-after tone of the vintage Supro lap steel pickup found on the 1958 Ozark that inspired the new model for 2019. Heard on recordings by Aerosmith, Jackson Browne and Ry Cooder, the ancient, humbucking pickup that was used by Supro for the Ozark guitar of the late 50s was borrowed directly from lap steels going all the way back to the 1940s. This unique pickup was mounted on a large, steel baseplate along with the volume and tone controls and bridge, all integrated into a single assembly. In the 1958 catalog, Supro referred to the pickup on the Ozark as a “powerful Western-Unit” with “extra response that Western Stylists require.” Put more simply, this axe was designed from the start to be a monster slide guitar. The magic of the original Supro lap steel pickup has been harnessed by such artists as David Lindley, Jason Isbell and Blake Mills.
- Mahogany body
- Set neck with black satin finish
- Lace Alumitone pickup
- Pau Ferro fretboard
- 24.75″ scale length
- Dot inlays
Each Supro Ozark guitar for 2019 is hand-numbered and comes with a signed COA plus a Supro Deluxe Gig Bag. The 2019 Supro Ozark is available now from Supro dealers worldwide for $899 USD.
Watch the company's video demo:
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