Archive for 2003

At 95, Family Patriarch Leads Remarkable Life

Saturday, December 20th, 2003

from the Gretsch House Telegram

Richard “Dick” Gretsch

The youngest of three brothers, Richard Francis Gretsch, nicknamed Dick, was born in 1908. He grew up with his brothers Bill and Fred in the family home in Forest Hills, NY.

Dick remembers trips to Europe with his father, to their offices in Paris and Germany, where they traveled by ship in those days. These trips could last up to a month, and the brothers would take turns traveling with their father. The boys also enjoyed train trips to the Gretsch office in Chicago. When not working, the brothers also took turns caddying for their father when he played golf, which, Dick tells us, he did “quite often.” Their father would pay them $1 plus a 25-cent tip. (more…)

Gretsch Drums Celebrate 120th Anniversary With Gala Celebration!

Saturday, November 8th, 2003

Story by GretschDrums.Com November ‘03

On June 13th, Kaman Music joined Fred and Dinah Gretsch as they commemorated 120 years of “That Great Gretsch Sound” with a special celebration dinner at the Hartford Club.

As guests arrived, each was personally greeted and thanked by Fred and Dinah Gretsch. Following dinner, Kaman Music President, Bob Saunders spoke of the Gretsch/Kaman relationship and presented the Gretsch’s with a distinctive award – a beautiful Gretsch drum shell featuring each of Gretsch’s badges through the years. Paul Damiano, Kaman’s VP of Sales and Marketing and the Kaman Percussion Team presented Fred and Dinah with an award to celebrate the expanded box kit offering that Gretsch and Kaman have developed together. Modern Drummer Editor, Rick Van Horn was also on hand to present Fred and Dinah with an award to commemorate the milestone anniversary. (more…)

Gretsch Throws A Rockin’ Party In Arizona!

Friday, November 7th, 2003

Story by Fender.Com November ‘03

Continuing its year-long celebration of 120 years of “That Great Gretsch Sound,” The Gretsch Company came out to Scottsdale, Arizona to throw a party near the headquarters of its newest business partner, Fender Musical Instruments Corporation. Held at the beautiful Millennium Resort on August 21st, the party was hosted by Fred and Dinah Gretsch, and was attended by three generations of Gretsch family members, Fender CEO Bill Schultz, Fender President Bill Mendello and more than 150 of Fender’s Arizona employees.

A warm, beautiful summer evening in the desert set the stage for a night of family and friends both old and new, as well a some great food and wonderful music! Following cocktails, drummer Vinnie Colaiuta led his quartet through some cool jazz numbers while Gretsch and Fender folk had the time to get to know each other a bit better. Since the relationship between Gretsch and Fender is still less than one year old, this provided a wonderful opportunity for the two groups to meet as family, and not just as business partners. (more…)

Gretsch Puts New Meaning Into “Beautiful” Music

Wednesday, May 21st, 2003

The art of music is a feast for the ears, while Guitar Art, a new concept being promoted by the Gretsch Guitar Company, is a feast for the eyes! In 2002 the Gretsch Company started an art program, where instruments were donated to schools and organizations to help them with their fundraising needs. Through this program, non-profit organizations received used guitars and turned them into beautiful and unique works of art that were then sold at auction.

Organizations such as The Monroe Art Guild in Monroe, Georgia benefited from the program by receiving several guitars that they, in turn challenged local artists to decorate for a fundraiser auction. Building on that success, the Holy Name School in Sheridan, Wyoming transformed their guitar into a mosaic work of art by the art teacher. In both cases the winning bidder got a unique one of a kind piece of art to display in their home, studio, or office and the organization received funding to help with operational costs or to support specific programs such as music or art. (more…)

Atlanta Chapter of The Recording Academy to Honor James Brown, Leslie Fram, Fred & Dinah Gretsch and TLC

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2003

ATLANTA (April 2, 2003) – The Atlanta Chapter of the Recording Academy has selected James Brown, Leslie Fram, Fred & Dinah Gretsch and TLC as its 2003 Heroes Awards recipients. The Heroes Award is the highest honor bestowed by an Academy Chapter and is given to honor outstanding individuals and institutions in the Atlanta region that have improved the environment for the creative community. The gala event, which attracts recording artists, key entertainment executives and community leaders, will be held on Thursday, June 5, 2003, at the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel (210 Peachtree Street, downtown Atlanta). Proceeds will benefit the Academy’s professional arts education programs for the music community of the Atlanta region and a portion to benefit the MusiCares Foundation – the Recording Academy’s health and human services charity.

The premiere event will commence at 6:30 p.m. with a VIP Press Reception and a special Silent Auction and cocktail hour, offering one-of-a-kind music memorabilia, as well as travel and entertainment packages. The Heroes Awards Dinner and Show begins at 8:00 p.m. and will recognize the esteemed honorees with VIP presenters and performances. Sponsorship packages and table sales are available by calling the Atlanta Chapter office at 404.249.8881. (more…)

New Guitar and Drum Websites From Gretsch!

Tuesday, April 1st, 2003


The Gretsch Company is proud to introduce the new Gretsch Guitar Website with the latest info on all Gretsch Guitars.

Be sure to sit back and enjoy browsing through all the fine models Gretsch has to offer. Nashvilles, Falcons and Classic Hollow bodies, Firebirds, Roundups and Jet Solid Bodies, Signature Series, Historic Series, Synchromatics, Big Body Ranchers … they’re all here! You can also locate your local dealer, find out about artists and see what’s hot! (more…)

Welcome to the New Leedy!

Tuesday, April 1st, 2003

The Leedy Drum Company was founded in 1895!

The strength of the Leedy legacy stands as a tribute to the founder, Ulysses G. Leedy. U.G. Leedy began his career as a professional percussionist in the 1890s. His personal need for instrument improvements led him to begin crafting his own. A good example is his first product, the folding drum stand. (Snare drums were hung on slings or placed on chairs until Leedy developed the stand.) Fellow musicians, quick to recognize the value and quality of Leedy,s creations, convinced him to start a business. With only $50.00 startup cash, Leedy set up a small shop in his Indianapolis apartment in 1898 and began making snare drum stands, then snare drums. Within two years he was able to buy four lots and build his first factory building.

Recognizing the value and prestige of the Leedy name, Gretsch has taken carefully measured steps in bringing Leedy back into the marketplace. At the 2003 Anaheim NAMM show, 25 new Leedy drums were displayed and received an overwhelming response. Gretsch expects to begin shipping the new Leedy drums to expectant dealers and their customers in mid-2003.

For more information visit (more…)

Sho-Bud Pedal Steel Guitars
Official Website

Tuesday, April 1st, 2003

Gretsch launches Sho-Bud website as official source for information about the popular pedal steel brand.

Click here to visit the new Sho-Bud website.