Wednesday, February 15, 2012
1967 Gretsch Nashville (6120)
The earliest of all Chet Atkins Gretsch models, the 6120 model was introduced in 1955 and featured western motifs such as cactus inlays and a large "G" cattle-branded onto the body. The western touches were lost relatively early on, and the guitar changed quite a bit by 1962, then remained relatively unchanged throughout the 60's.
In late '61, Gretsch introduced the "Electrotone" body; namely a hollowbody guitar without any open soundholes (the tradition 'f" holes on the top are painted on). This closed body reduced feedback, and was introduced thanks to a suggestion from Chet Atkins himself. Fortunately for rock n rollers, the closed body helped reduced howling feedback. Also, the closed body called for the open hole in the back of the guitar in which to load the electronics (as seen in the photos).
This model is commonly confused with the Chet Atkins Country Gentleman, and while the shape is similar, the lower bout of the Nashville measures (approximately) 16" across, while the larger Gent is ((approximately) 17" wide at the lower bout and was also featured in a dark "walnut" stain.
Images courtesy of Gryphon Stringed Instruments.