vintage case

With its aged spruce top, distinctive pickguard, "Gumby" headstock, and Vistatone pickups, this Coronado has character—and voice—in spades.

This original archtop Coronado’s Vistatone pickups speak the language of Ry Cooder and other tone hounds.

Many of my favorite tales from instrument manufacturing history are connected to the Dopyera brothers. So many brands are linked to their family name that it's almost unimaginable. And that includes Supro, a classic brand that has experienced a modern renaissance.

Recently, this 1961 Supro Coronado electric guitar came through the doors at our shop. I mention that it's a guitar, because Supro also used the Coronado name for an amplifier—and, in fact, still does. But the Coronado electric 6-string was a staple of the company's catalog for years, and went through a variety of permutations, including the archtop design of this month's guitar and, by 1963, a Res-O-Glass version. There's even a current model inspired by the latter, called the Coronado II, that sports what the new Supro calls an “Acoustic-glass" top.

Read MoreShow less