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Gretsch have certainly nailed the whole cool vibe  – The Les Paul might offer curly figured maple tops, underneath a lush burst finish – Fender ensured that the Strat’s curves and contours always look so stylish – Whilst the Tele shows us that nothing beats the performance qualities of a dirty blonde – Chet Atkins, as one of the world’s finest virtuoso guitarists, had a strong input with regards to the whole design process of many Gretsch Guitars, but it was Rock n Roll, via the likes of Duane, Eddie and Cliff Gallup, that ensured such guitars became part of popular music – The 60’s invasion of British groups, led by The Beatles and The Animals further enriched the demand for Gretsch Guitars – Nearly a decade later, Pete Townshend led Gretsch towards a new genre of rock when The Who recorded Who’s Next and Quadrophenia – Maybe the crunch power chord sounds of the Who influenced the likes of Malcolm Young and even Richard  Fortus (Guns and Roses) – It certainly didn’t do Neil Young or Billy Duffy any harm – I can’t ever recall Brian Setzer not having a Gretsch in his hand throughout any part of his successful career – Whilst The Edge, Johnny Marr and John Squire continue to fly the flag, that ensures Gretsch Guitars are still part and parcel of popular music today – So if jazz, country, rock n roll, rock a Billy, rock, Brit Pop or punk is your thing, then this used Gretsch G6196TSP 2G Country Club, from 2009, might be your new play mate – Released as part of a limited run, from 2009, to 2012, as part of the Made in Japan Professional Collection – Note the cool two tone finish, with a smoke grey top and a metallic violet rim, rear and neck

Pleaser read below a host of details with regards to this Gretsch G6196TSP-2G Country Club :-

Condition wise this Country Club is clean without quite earning that ‘mint as new condition’ tag – Probably the biggest give away of it looking used is the usual tarnish to the gold hardware – Mainly to the Bigsby vibrato assembly – The black scratch plate barely shows any ‘haze’ from pick wear – Look to the rear of the body and you can just about make out the odd subtle graze, that is only skin deep, to the gloss finish – Otherwise a very clean guitar – No fret issues – It certainly doesn’t appear to have seen much action, or indeed it has been well cared for, over the last 14 years or so

Playing a Gretsch Guitar :- I generally re-string most guitars with 10-46 gauge strings – But I feel that slightly thicker E, A, D strings favour such a guitar, hence a set of 10-52 gauge strings – It ensures a slightly stiffer feel on the lower strings, so with a sensible fluid action, you can lay into the wound strings without any worry about string rattle – Perfect for those walking country or rock n roll bass lines, or indeed AC/DC style power chords and riffs – It is not set-up with a low metal/shred action, but neither is it stiff/high – As I said earlier ‘sensible fluid’ so it will still respond to a light touch – Tone wise it might well depend if you play with a clean amp set-up, that slightly overdriven rock n roll amp setting, or more gain, aka Townshend/Duffy and co – There is no way my playing ability can try out any Chet Atkins style clean finger picking styles – But I can manage a few lush jazz style melodic chords – The hollow body nature of the Country Club, with a pair of single coil Dyna Sonic pick-ups, ensures a ‘woody’ characteristic that ‘growls’ a touch when you add a hint of gain on the amp – The custom wound Seymour Duncan pick-ups ensure that single coil clarity is always present and correct, yet tone is full, rich and smooth from the neck pick-up – Whilst you’ll hear a full bodied twang, from the bridge pick-up, without ever sounding harsh, so no ice pick attack  – You can add more gain as required, but with more volume, you’ll have to learn to control the feedback, but that is part and parcel of such guitars for so many players – To me it sounds better with less gain, so very much Brian Setzer eat your heart out and rock n roll, swing, boogie etc at is best and that is where the hollow body growl shines

For some players, such a guitar may well be the only guitar you’ll need – Yet for other players, with a few other guitars in their arsenal, a Gretsch brings something new to the table and makes you try out some fresh licks, and chords – It ain’t an LP, a PRS, a 335 etc – I feel that many guitars almost let you play on auto pilot, but I found this Gretsch made me check out a few different licks, chords and even sounds, as such it offered a somewhat fresh approach for me – Playing less notes and concentrating on the right note at the right time – Aka JJ Cale  and make me think more about what I’m playing – Hence less auto pilot – I know Brian Setzer can happily drive on the fast lane and show off many fancy licks ‘n’ tricks, but equally many famous Gretsch players are more about ‘less’ whereby a tuneful melodic catchy phrase is far more important

Like a Gibson Les Paul, a Strat, or a Tele, hollow body Gretsch Guitars were designed before Elvis and what we now tag as ‘rock n roll’ – Certainly designed before the days of rock – As such they were never designed to be played in so many different genres – So in many ways such guitars are a happy accident – But a big thanks for that

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Guitars4You is not another corporate high street guitar store - My selection of premium grade guitars is about quality not quantity. Every guitar has been selected, inspected and approved by me, with particular attention to the set-up and playing performance. Every sale, phone call, email and mail order transaction is handled by me. A journey that is now over 40 years old, has fuelled my knowledge, experience, love, devotion and passion for exceptionally fine guitars.