Beatles Guitars & Gear

Gretsch Rickenbacker Fender Vox
Gibson J45 Hofner Ramirez Epiphone

 

Extremely Limited Model
Ed Sullivan 40th Anniversary Tribute Guitar
The English Gentleman

Gretsch Guitar, George Harrison, Duo Jet, Custom Made Guitars

1961: 1957 Gretsch 6128 Duo Jet semi-solid mahogany body, black finish, silver pickguard; Serial #21179:  Harrison found this one through a member of a band called the Delacardoes, who got a tip from a taxi driver. The driver, Ivan Hayward, was a former merchant seaman who was planning on emigrating and had decided to sell the Gretsch Duo Jet he'd bought at Sam Goody's in New York City in 1957.  "God knows how I managed to get 75 quid together," Harrison recalls in the Anthology book.  "It seemed like a fortune.  I remember having it in my inside pocket, thinking 'I hope nobody mugs me.' "  (As it turned out, he only had 70 at the time and had to leave an IOU for the balance -- (Which he never got around to paying.)   The Duo Jet sported "humped block" inlays, a Bigsby vibrato and two single-coil DeArmond pickups.   Harrison used this sturdy, stylish beauty for the early singles, the Please Please Me sessions and innumerable shows in Hamburg, at the Cavern, the Casbah and throughout Britain until late spring '63.  Custom Guitars Available Ed Roman GuitarsThen, after getting a swankier Gretsch, Harrison gave this instrument to Hamburg mate Klaus Voormann, who changed one pickup and hung on to it for about 20 years before giving it back to Harrison.  Sometime in late '85 or '86 this guitar was sent to guitar tech Alan Rogan, who gave it to luthier Roger Giffin for the rehab work.  "I had to rewire it," Giffin recalls, "because true to form with old Gretsch guitars, the original wiring was disintegrating."  Rogan "was working with George on and off at the time. He also brought in a '50s Strat and George's original Rickenbacker 12 string. I refinished the Strat matte black (I've seen George playing that in a video) but I'm not sure what I did to the Rickenbacker." 

Regarding the Duo Jet, Melvyn Hiscock recalls that Giffin also "had a spare DeArmond pickup which he fitted and generally gave the guitar the once-over. I was Roger's shop manager and was there when all this happened.  I even got to play 'Twist and Shout' and a few other Beatle tunes on it."  Harrison put the restored Duo Jet to use on Cloud Nine (1987), whose cover it graces.  Pictured above is Gretsch's authentic G6128-57 reissue.

This Passage Quoted Courtesy of John F. Crowley of www.thecanteen.com.


Gretsch George Harrison Duo Jet Models 1957 & 1962

When the Beatles started to get famous in the early 60s, George bought a 1962 Chet Atkins "Country Gentleman" Gretsch guitar. George can be seen using this one more often than anything else on stage. I am given to understand he didn't use it as much in the studio recordings. There were many attempts at reissuing the Country Gentleman as George played it and finally Gretsch has got it totally right.

The Gretsch logo on the plexi pickguard is the only marking, two Filter-trons, Grover Imperials and even the dual mutes have been brought back.

Ed Roman now offers The "English Gentleman" Jet black version to commemorate the black & white TV . Affectionately dubbed the" Ed Sullivan tribute model" which was issued in very limited quantities, after the cancellation of the show and 40 years to the month when the Beatles appeared on it in February of 1964.

I can remember being glued to the TV set every Sunday night to see those first 3 shows. I was 14 and I wanted to be a Beatle.

George was always my favorite Beatle.  Our birthdays are even the same.

Ed Roman has Gretsch's exact reproduction of the Original George Harrison Black Country Gentleman. Ed Roman Guitar King offers both versions of this guitar in the deep original brown color. Ed Roman also offers both versions in the Jet black color.


The Beatles @ Shea Stadium 1975  

George's Country Gentleman got damaged beyond repair in this mishap.

There are other rumors that the guitar was stolen. I have it on good authority that 3 of the Beatles guitars were stolen from a rehearsal studio.

One was George's 65 Rickenbacker and one was one of Paul's Hofner's, The third one has not been revealed to me.

George replaced his Broken/Stolen guitar with another Gretsch Chet Atkins model, the Tennessee Rose.

The Tennessee Rose is a little smaller than the Gent, and also utilized the Electro tone body with the painted F holes.

George can be seen playing this guitar in their second US tour, including the massive first Shea stadium concert in 1965.   Sometimes the Tennessee Rose with Hi Lo Trons is referred to as "The Ticket To Ride Guitar"

Gretsch 1962 "Ticket to Ride" Reissue 6119HT

 

 
Beatle Bass

Hilton Valentine of The Animals & George Harrison were the first guitar players that ever influenced me, I was 14 years old when the Beatles came on Ed Sullivan and my world was changed forever. I moved on to Jeff Beck, & Leslie West and Lindsey Buckingham but years later I came back to really appreciating the incredible talent that was George Harrison.  George was my favorite Beatle and ironically the only one of them I never actually met face to face.

Today almost 40 years later I am amazed every time I listen to the early Beatle tracks. Remember, George Harrison was the youngest of the Beatles and was only 19 when he was recording all those great songs in the early 60's. I cannot imagine how and where he learned to play so well.

     Ed Roman

 

This Grouping was Specially Ordered Without Mutes Back in 2004
There are Only 8 of these in the world !!
Here they all are in one picture !!!!
Usually There Is A Mute System Included No Extra Charge

Gretsch Guitars, Exclusive Ed Roman Model BLACK Country Gentleman

This Grouping was Specially Ordered Without Mutes
Usually There Is A Mute System Included No Extra Charge

George's original Country Gentleman was brown. Many people (including myself) thought it was black.

After all, we all saw the Beatles on black & white TV. Plus, brown isn't a very rock n' roll color. 
Above a picture of George with a refinished black Gretsch Country Gentleman.

These are again available by special arrangement from Gretsch & Ed Roman Guitars Las Vegas.

Originally This guitar was known as the Ed Sullivan Commemorative Model.  Now we are simply calling it the "British Gentleman."

Special Hard Shell Case Included.

Carl "Blue Suede Shoes" Perkins

Legends of Rock

Carl spent eight great days with Paul and Linda, along with George and Ringo, Stevie Wonder, and the legendary Beatles producer George Martin, with whom Paul owned a studio on the island.

The studio was in Paul's house, while Martin had his own house elsewhere on the property. Carl described Martin's house as a castle. That's where he stayed for the week.

"As the time was drawing near for me to go home, I was sitting out on the patio," Carl told Dominic Ambrosio and his camera, his guitar sitting on his lap and looking like a part of him. "And I was thinking how lucky Carl Perkins was.

I'm kind of sentimental. Sometimes I can sing it but I can't say it, and that night before, I wrote a song. And in the morning, I went down to the studio and said to Paul and Linda, I'm not good at saying good-bye, but I wrote this song last night, and I want to play it for you.' It was called 'My Old Friend' . . ."

Carl sang it now for Dominic with the extra emotional emphasis on the refrain:  My old friend, won't you think about me every now and then. . .  "Well, halfway through the song, I see Paul is really crying, tears flowing down his face," Carl said. "And he stepped outside. I said to Linda, 'Linda, I didn't mean to upset him.' She says, 'Carl, how did you know?'

I said, 'Darlin', I don't know what yer talkin' about.  How did I know what?' "

John Lennon had been killed only months before outside his apartment building, the Dakota in New York. Linda explained that, although it wasn't publicly known, only days before his death, she and Paul had visited John and Yoko at the Dakota.

At the end of the visit, as they were saying good-bye, John said to Paul, "Think of me every now and then, my old friend." "Linda put her arms around me," Carl said now on a cold January day in Tennessee sixteen years later, "and she said, 'Thank you, Carl, he needed that.' It was a touching moment and it was a frightful moment for me."

The song had just come to him out of the blue that night as he sat alone on the deck off his room in George Martin's castle. And the strange thing, he later told Rick, was that he didn't write the song down--something he always did. Whenever he thought of a lyric, let alone an entire song, he had to write it down right away or he would lose it. "Rick," Carl

said, "that song was with me. I couldn't get it out of my head" He was sure John had written the song from beyond and given it to him for Paul.

Gretsch Info On Beatles Guitars Gretsch Duo Jet  6128 (1957 model)

Gretsch Duo Jet 6128 (1957 model)

George Harrison later described the Gretsch Duo Jet as his "first good guitar." He bought it second-hand in 1961 for around 75 (around $2,200 in today's money), apparently after seeing an ad in a paper.

Harrison played the Duo Jet through the Hamburg days and Cavern years, tours of Europe and America in 1964 and on many Beatles recordings. The guitar, which looks almost identical to the one photographed above, was a 1957 model. It is still owned by the Harrison Estate today.

Gretsch Chet Atkins Country Gentleman

Gretsch Chet Atkins Country Gentleman

George bought two Gretsch Chet Atkins Country Gentleman guitars in 1963. Both guitars were very similar, one had two control-knob mutes which could be used to "damp" the strings, such as the one above.

The Gretsch Chet Atkins Country Gentleman had been designed in collaboration with American country guitarist Chet Atkins, Harrison was a big Chet Atkins fan and it came through on his playing style.

George acquired his first Country Gentleman, a 1962 model, in May 1963. 

 

Rickenbacker 360-12

 

 

Gretsch Jet Fire Bird

In 1963, George Harrison used a Gretsch Jet Fire Bird, like the one above.

George told the press that "the guitar belonged to somebody else", & that he was just trying it out at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, where the Beatles performed regularly in their pre-fame days.
 



Gretsch Chet Atkins Tennessean


Gretsch Chet Atkins Tennessean  AKA Nashville Model   (AKA "Ticket To Ride")

In 1964, "The year that of the Beatles ", George Harrison acquired a new Gretsch Chet Atkins Tennessean.

The guitar was probably manufactured in 1963  no documentation exists.
George used this guitar on many recordings, including Ticket To Ride,  Mr Moonlight & Feel Fine. He also used it alot live. 
 


John Lennon

Gretsch Chet Atkins 6120 (1962 model)

                      John Lennon With His Gretsch Nashville Model Guitar
 Gretsch Chet Atkins 6120 (1962 model)

John Lennon used this guitar in studio sessions 1966,
There are some pictures of him with it during the Paperback Writer Sessions.

 

John Lennon also played a Gretsch guitar, Lennon used a 6120 Gretsch Nashville model.  Mostly it was used on the Revolver album. There are scarce few pictures of him with it. Gretsch reissued the mid sixties 6120 Nashville double cut, just like John's, and it is available at Ed Roman Guitars

 

 

George Harrison Model Ramirez Classical Guitar
"And I Love Her"

sitemap