Gretsch Country Classic “August 2004” 6122-1958

$4,500.00

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Gretsch Country Classic “August 2004” 6122-1958

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Tony Elder / Steve Jackson
Black Dot Music
Est 1985

6122-II Country Classic II/Country Gentleman

For some time Gretsch could not use the “Country Gentleman” name. During this period, most Gents were known as Country Classics. The II refers to the double-cutaway model. There was also a 6122-S single-cutaway Country Classic I. In the very early revival years, the 6122-II was simply known as the 6122. The model designation picked up the II designation a bit later, better matching the model name, and differentiating it from other, more faithful recreations of the classic 6122 formula. In 2008 Gretsch regained the rights to use “Country Gentleman”, and the Country Classic reverted to the name. Note that unlike classic Gents and more faithful modern recreations, 6122-II models have open f-holes, no mud switch, and the neck joins at the 18th fret rather than the 14th.


Country Gents & Southern Belles

The 6122 Country Gentleman is considered by many to be one of the holy trinity of Gretsch guitars, along with the 6120 and White Falcon. Although it lacks the cowboy cool of a G-branded 6120 or the dazzle of the Falcon, it has an elegance (and some would say playability) the others lack. The fact that George Harrison played one doesn’t hurt, either.None In late 1960 the body, like many Gretsches, was trimmed down to about 2” thick, but the next major change came in ‘62, when the Gent adopted Gretsch’s new “Electrotone” double cutaway body. The ‘62 and ‘63 models were identical, and it was one of these that Harrison made famous. After ‘63, Gents changed again, gaining a “Country Gentleman” logo on the pickguard, a SuperTron pickup instead of a FilterTron by the neck, and different tuners, among other changes.The SuperTron was dropped in ‘67, rosewood replaced ebony on the fingerboard sometime in the late ‘60s and Gretsch, under Baldwin control, beginning dropping features to keep costs down.

In 1970 the ebony fingerboard re-appeared, but the Gent was obviously a Baldwin creation by this time, with its oddly shaped pickguard, and in the early ‘70s the model was re-designated 7670.

Atkins owned the rights to the “Country Gentleman” name, and in 1978 he jumped ship to Gibson, taking the name with him. Gretsch renamed it Country Squire and soldiered on briefly, before changing the name again to “Southern Belle”.

The 7670 Southern Belle model makes an interesting side note to the Country Gentleman legend: As Gretsch foundered under Baldwin’s ownership, production was eventually moved to Mexico, where at least one Gent was reportedly made.

By some reports, production moved to Mexico in 1978 or ‘79, but according to others no guitars came out of Mexico until the early 80s, possibly as late as 1984 or ‘85. Either way, Chet Atkins had left Gretsch, so the Gents were offered as the Southern Belle model.

According to Gretsch mainstay Duke Kramer, only about 100 Southern Belle/Country Gents were made, all in Mexico. The guitars that were made are beautiful examples and are at least up to the standard of the Arkansas-made guitars. The business and distribution side had simply become too chaotic for them to be successful.

The 6122 Country Gentleman is considered by many to be one of the holy trinity of Gretsch guitars, along with the 6120 and White Falcon. Although it lacks the cowboy cool of a G-branded 6120 or the dazzle of the Falcon, it has an elegance (and some would say playability) the others lack. The fact that George Harrison played one doesn’t hurt, either.

None In late 1960 the body, like many Gretsches, was trimmed down to about 2” thick, but the next major change came in ‘62, when the Gent adopted Gretsch’s new “Electrotone” double cutaway body. The ‘62 and ‘63 models were identical, and it was one of these that Harrison made famous. After ‘63, Gents changed again, gaining a “Country Gentleman” logo on the pickguard, a SuperTron pickup instead of a FilterTron by the neck, and different tuners, among other changes.

The SuperTron was dropped in ‘67, rosewood replaced ebony on the fingerboard sometime in the late ‘60s and Gretsch, under Baldwin control, beginning dropping features to keep costs down.

In 1970 the ebony fingerboard re-appeared, but the Gent was obviously a Baldwin creation by this time, with its oddly shaped pickguard, and in the early ‘70s the model was re-designated 7670.

Atkins owned the rights to the “Country Gentleman” name, and in 1978 he jumped ship to Gibson, taking the name with him. Gretsch renamed it Country Squire and soldiered on briefly, before changing the name again to “Southern Belle”.

The 7670 Southern Belle model makes an interesting side note to the Country Gentleman legend: As Gretsch foundered under Baldwin’s ownership, production was eventually moved to Mexico, where at least one Gent was reportedly made.

By some reports, production moved to Mexico in 1978 or ‘79, but according to others no guitars came out of Mexico until the early 80s, possibly as late as 1984 or ‘85. Either way, Chet Atkins had left Gretsch, so the Gents were offered as the Southern Belle model.

According to Gretsch mainstay Duke Kramer, only about 100 Southern Belle/Country Gents were made, all in Mexico. The guitars that were made are beautiful examples and are at least up to the standard of the Arkansas-made guitars. The business and distribution side had simply become too chaotic for them to be successful.

Additional information

Weight 4 kg
Dimensions 110 x 45 x 18 cm
brand

colour

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