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GALLERY: Chet Atkins at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

See the guitars the legendary picker used throughout his career. Photos by Chris Kies

D'Angelico Excel

D'Angelico Excel
Atkins purchased this Excel in 1950 and soon after added a metal bridge, Vibrola, two pickups, volume controls, jack, and pickup selector switch. He relied on this guitar throughout his early career as a session guitarist and solo artist in the early 1950s, as well as with Mother Maybelle and the Carter Sisters. June Carter accidentally broke the guitar's neck in 1953, but it was restored and later used on his 1996 album, Almost Alone .