“Chet signed the guitar 1 in ’91 and added ‘CGP’ after his signature,” says Fred Stucky, owner of April 2011’s Guitar of the Month. “I always thought it meant
“Chet signed the guitar 1 in ’91 and added ‘CGP’ after his signature,” says Fred Stucky, owner of April 2011’s Guitar of the Month. “I always thought it meant ‘country guitar player,’ so when Brian signed it in ’92 I had him add ‘RGP’ after his name. He asked why and I said “because you’re a rockabilly guitar player.” It wasn’t until many years later that I learned ‘CGP’ meant ‘certified guitar player,’ so ‘RGP’ always makes me smile when people ask about it.”
Plenty of marquee guitarists have used the Chet Atkins-endorsed Gretsch 6120, including Eddie Cochran, Duane Eddy, and Jim “Reverend Horton Heat” Heath—in fact, all the aforementioned players eventually had signature models built off the 6120 platform. But Brian Setzer is probably the guitarist most associated with the 24.6"-scale hollowbody. And his iconic instrument—which features Filter’Tron humbuckers, a flamed-maple neck with an ebony fingerboard, and laminated maple top, back, and sides—is of the same vintage that several collectors in Edward Ball’s book Gretsch 6120: The History of a Legendary Guitar call the perfect iteration of the guitar. Setzer’s famous 1959 6120, serial number 33024, was bought in pieces and then reconstructed. It’s the guitar he used to fuel both his initial success in the ’80s with the Stray Cats and the massive rockabilly resurgence that the band’s popularity fired. And it’s been with him on virtually every project since—from his ’90s big-band boom with the Brian Setzer Orchestra to his current reign as the king of modern swing and rockabilly.
Along the way, that famous orange-stained axe has inspired many tribute projects—from amateur home jobs to a Gretsch Custom Shop replica. But Fred Stucky, guitarist/singer for the Philadelphia-based garage-country band Gas Money, had something more authentic in mind for his 6120 project.
“I was looking for my first ’59 6120, and I wanted it to be close in serial number to Setzer’s,” Stucky says of the serial-number 33002 hollowbody he purchased at the Dallas Guitar Show in 1990 for $2500. “I knew even back then, 20 years ago, that Gretsches within certain production batches were better than others. That 33000 batch is pretty special. It was the last batch of 2.75"-deep 6120s with an enamel-faced B6 Bigsby vibrato. They also have the light trestle bracing and, purportedly, a slightly thinner top.” (In 1960, the 6120 was temporarily changed to a 2.5" depth and the Bigsby was changed to a V-style version. However, Gretsch eventually returned to the 2.75" body depth—including on current production models—and made the enamel-faced Bigsby an option. Many current Gretsches, including Setzer’s signature guitars, also feature 1959 trestle bracing and top thicknesses.)
Stucky took the time modify the guitar into a near-perfect homage to Setzer’s 6120 almost two decades before the Gretsch company even thought of it. (In 2007, Gretsch had a limited run of 59 Custom Shop Limited Edition Brian Setzer Tribute 1959 6120 Nashvilles.) “I loved Setzer’s early-’80s dirty tone,” he explains, “so, in an effort to mutate what he did and make it my own, I took out the zero fret and put in a graphite nut, added some Schaller tuners, and removed the tone switch on the upper bout.” (Setzer removed the tone switch on his ’59 and moved the pickup selector switch to the vacant spot, which gave the appearance that his guitar lacks a pickup-selector switch.) Stucky was even lucky enough to secure signatures from both of the 6120’s most famous users— Atkins and Setzer—which are located on its top between the Bigsby B6 trem and its Volume knobs.
“Pete Townsend said his ’59 6120 was the loudest guitar he’s ever owned—and he was right.” Stucky says the guitar is his main gigging axe and that, paired with a ’58 tweed Deluxe, it enables him to easily cover everything from classic George Jones to souped-up Sun Studio-era Elvis.
“There is no equal in tone, and it’s all I know,” says Stucky. “The pure magic of these vintage instruments being used in the proper honkytonk settings is just right.”
Kick off the holiday season by shopping for the guitar player in your life at Guitar Center! Now through December 24th 2022, save on exclusive instruments, accessories, apparel, and more with hundreds of items at their lowest prices of the year.
We’ve compiled this year’s best deals in the 2022 Holiday Gift Guide presented by Guitar Center.
Looking for a compact, “noiseless” way to plug in and play guitar? Check out the brand-new Gibson Digital Amp, available only in the Gibson App.
The new Gibson App simplifies the learning process and brings guitar playing to life for the current and next generation of guitarists in a modern, comprehensive, and intuitive way. The Gibson App is the place to take your guitar playing to the next level. New to the Gibson App is the Gibson Digital Amp, the ultimate starting amplifier for beginners and a flexible amp on-the-go for intermediate players and pros to get their sound anywhere. The Gibson Digital Amp is an accessible amplifier for both acoustic and electric guitars, and is currently available for Apple/iOS users--an Android version will debut next year.
Use the Gibson Digital Amp’s jamming guide to get started and transform your sound with built-in effects and pedals, jam to backing tracks, or use it in lessons and songs. The Gibson Digital Amp only requires your phone, and wired headphones for the best playing experience, no cables are needed. The amp features 3 acoustic mic presets, 4 electric amp presets, and 6 effects pedals.
The Gibson Digital Amp is the ultimate starting amplifier for beginners and a flexible amp on-the-go for intermediates and pros.
The Gibson App uses a unique two-way, interactive platform to teach guitar students how to do everything from playing their first note to shredding loads of songs. The Gibson App features interactive lessons with thousands of lessons and songs. Learn the songs step-by-step with video tutorials from superstar artists and pro guitarists in the “Gibson App Guide.” The Gibson App also includes the new Digital Amp, a built-in tuner, a metronome, Gibson TV, and new songs are added every week. New Gibson App Guides are added regularly and include Tommy “Spaceman” Thayer’s favorite iconic KISS guitar solos, Richie Faulkner’s (Judas Priest) “Guide to Metal,” Jared James Nichols’ “Guide to Blues,” CELISSE’s “Guide to Songwriting,” and more.
The Gibson App uses “audio augmented reality” to provide dynamic feedback to students as they learn and play. As you pluck a note or strum a chord, the Gibson App listens to your guitar and gives you real-time feedback on your playing. It also gives students a more contextual learning experience: Instead of learning chords and scales in a vacuum, you’re able to practice on a scrolling tablature that lets you hear how you sound with the backing of a virtual band. That means you can load up “Hurt” by Johnny Cash, “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison, “American Girl" by Tom Petty, “Nothing Else Matters” by Metallica, “Where is My Mind" by Pixies, “Country Roads” by John Denver, “I Hate Myself For Loving You" by Joan Jett, “Heaven” by Kane Brown, “Shape Of You” by Ed Sheeran, “Killer Queen” by Queen,“ Sweet Child O’ Mine,” by Guns ‘N Roses, “Run to the Hills” by Iron Maiden, “Roxanne” by The Police, and “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and “The Man Who Sold the World” by Nirvana, “Are You Gonna Go My Way” by Lenny Kravitz, and “Don't Look Back In Anger” by Oasis and hundreds more songs in a wide range of genres, to see how your play matches up with such seminal tracks.
As you’re playing, the Gibson App gives you feedback on timing and tone, ensuring that students are getting active input on how their play is developing. The Gibson App appeals to players of all levels, it’s not just for beginners looking to learn a few chords; the app can assist seasoned guitarists who are working their way through difficult riffs, want to learn their favorite songs, or polish their advanced techniques.
Players can also challenge themselves by speeding up or slowing the tabs. Like having a full-time guitar teacher, the Gibson App keeps track of all your progress and adjusts lesson plans accordingly. The Gibson App released a “backing track mode” which supports both lesson and song playback without headphones, so users can self-select what works best for their current environment. And that’s not all: the Gibson App also packs in a fully-featured digital tuner for guitar first-timers, there’s even a detailed lesson on how to tune your instrument, a multi-function metronome, players can connect to free one-on-one consultations with Gibson’s Virtual Guitar Tech team, and to direct links to the Gibson, Epiphone, and Kramer online stores for easy shopping for guitars, gear, apparel, and accessories.
Learn Guitar With The Gibson App
The Gibson App is more than a pocket-sized guitar teacher, it’s loaded with an archive of exclusive content and original programming from its premium and accessible award-winning online network, Gibson TV, featuring music icons telling their best guitar stories, with more episodes and installments added regularly. Users can watch Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi share insights and tales from his decades-long career on the series “Icons,” dive into Joe Bonamassa’s assortment of legendary Les Paul guitars on “The Collection,” or see how Gibson’s iconic instruments are made in their Nashville factory from body to binding on “The Process.” There’s even a series called “The Scene” that focuses on backstage stories from hallowed music venues from coast to coast like The Troubadour and Grand Ole Opry.
The Gibson App free version features a few lessons a day; the premium version of the Gibson App offers full access and a 14-day free trial, then costs $19.99/£16.49 monthly or $119.99/£98.99 yearly.
For more information, please visit gibson.com.
This pickup captures the clear, bell-like single-coil chime of a classic P-90 when played clean and retains the tight mids and articulate low-end vintage growl and smooth sustain saturation when pushed into overdrive.
Belltone Guitars, as part of their Custom-Select System curated offering of pickups, has partnered McNelly pickups to create a one-of-a-kind retro-vibe P-90 pickup in the standard Filtertron size format. This pickup captures the clear, bell-like single-coil chime of a classic P-90 when played clean and retains the tight mids and articulate low-end vintage growl, and smooth sustain saturation when pushed into overdrive.
The McNelly P-90 Foil-Coil comes housed in a ‘raw’ nickel outer casing with a dull nickel foil face with metal mount screw gromets to complete the ‘new-vintage’ aesthetic, making it a perfect choice for your signature Belltone custom build. Available exclusively through Belltone Guitars.
Check out the Custom-Select System belltoneguitars.com to preview the McNelly P-90 Foil-Trons and all our standard and selectable components available to create your own signature Belltone. Then visit the Dream Lab on our website and select either model B-Classic ONE with its top binding or B-Classic TWO with its arm and body contours select your body color from our wide range of offerings, select your neck profile of either standard ‘C’ or thicker ’59 Round Back and either Maple or Rosewood fingerboard followed by your tuners, pickguard, and strings. Finally, review our curated custom-designed, and unique pickup selection to locate the McNelly P-90 Foil-Trons to complete your signature build.
Builds start at just over $2,300.00 with a custom case and shipping included.
For more information, please visit belltoneguitars.com.
McNelly P 90 Foil Tron video Sep27
Belltone P-90 Foil-Tron Pickup
DiMarzio, Inc. announces the Relentless P (DP299), the Relentless J Bridge (DP301), Relentless J Neck (DP300), and the Relentless J Pair (DP302) for 4 string basses.
DiMarzio, Inc. announces the release of the Relentless P (DP299), the Relentless J Bridge (DP301), Relentless J Neck (DP300), and the Relentless J Pair (DP302) for 4 string basses. The new Relentless P and Relentless J series pickups feature the Relentless cover designed in collaboration with Billy Sheehan.
As with the Relentless pickups, we removed all the hard edges from the standard P Bass and standard J Basspickups, and added an arch to the top of the pickups to bring the sensing coils and pole pieces closer to the strings. These improvements increase the dynamic range and make active circuitry unnecessary.
The Relentless P and Relentless J pickups incorporate Neodymium magnets and produce 70 percent more output than traditional passive pickups, and they’re dead quiet due to the incorporation of metal covers and foil-shielded cables. To dial in (or fine-tune) the individual string output, the Relentless P and Relentless J include eight adjustable pole pieces. These pickups also have a broad magnetic field so you can even bend notes without volume dropout.
DiMarzio’s extra shielding makes the Relentless P and Relentless J better for both recording and stage performances. We’ve mounted them onto robust .09375” thick circuit board base plates to eliminate the annoying protruding mounting screws — ultimately creating a more comfortable and consistent foundation to rest your fingers on.
The new Relentless P steps beyond the traditional P-Bass sound and can only be described as massive. It has more of everything: more volume, beefier lows, a growling midrange, and crispy highs with better individual string definition.
The Relentless J incorporates a new invention, (patent pending) parallelogram-shaped coils, offering an expanded mid-range punch, snappy highs, precise lows, and a new dimension to the sound of the Relentless series pickups.
Relentless P and Relentless J pickups will breathe new life into any bass, increase playability, and work well for any style of music from Motown to metal.
DiMarzio’s Relentless P, Relentless J Bridge, Relentless J Neck, and Relentless J pair are made in the U.S.A. and may now be ordered for immediate delivery.
Suggested List Price for the Relentless P is $169.00 (MAP $119.99).
Suggested List Price for the Relentless J Bridge and Relentless J neck is $155.00 (MAP $109.99).
Suggested List Price for the Relentless J Pair is $296.00 (MAP 209.99).
For more information, please visit our website at dimarzio.com.