Archive for 2008

Richard “Dick” Gretsch Sr. at The Century Mark — Happy Birthday!

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

Danbury, Connecticut — As he celebrated his one hundredth birthday on June 14, Richard “Dick” Gretsch Sr. had a lot to look back on. He’s led a fascinating life full of noteworthy milestones. But misty-eyed reminiscing isn’t really Dick’s style. He’s too busy.

A long-time Connecticut resident, Dick currently makes his home at the Glen Crest retirement center in Danbury. He lives independently in his own apartment, the walls of which are covered with framed photos, newspaper articles, and certificates that document his personal and professional accomplishments. A small patio is brightened by several flowering plants and a bird feeder that attracts jays and robins.

The apartment might seem the quintessential home for the quiet retiree-were it not for the room that serves as Dick’s office. There, a printer busily spits out emails from (more…)

Bo Diddley Passes Away at Age 79

Monday, June 2nd, 2008

Long Time Gretsch Friend Entertained and Inspired the Globe

Legendary R&B king and long-time Gretsch friend, Bo Diddley, has passed away at the age of 79. With his rectangular Gretsch guitar and trademark “Bo Diddley Beat”, he entertained and inspired the globe. His Ed Sullivan television debut aired way back in 1955. That was America’s first look at a man whose unique rhythm and style would eventually serve as fuel for the Rock’n'Roll, Blues, and Psycodelic genres. (more…)

Gretsch Takes Over the Winter 2008 NAMM Show

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008

Kicking off the new year, the 2008 Winter Show was the busiest on record!

Anaheim, CA — With an official total of 88,128 registrants, this year’s winter NAMM Show was the busiest on record. This semiannual event, hosted by the city of Anaheim, featured five main areas that allowed attendees to see, try and buy from the ever-growing array of musical products. Buyers, manufacturers and artists were treated to a dizzying display of the Music Industries top shelf merchandise.

As always, Gretsch and all Gretsch Products were on hand and showcased throughout the five halls of the convention center. Gretsch Guitars, Drums, Gear, Amps and Bigsby Vibratos seemed (more…)

The Gretsch Company Celebrates 125 Years of That Great Gretsch Sound

Sunday, January 20th, 2008

SAVANNAH, Ga., U.S.A., January 1, 2008 – The Gretsch Company, one of the world’s most well-known drum and guitar manufacturers, will celebrate its 125th anniversary in 2008. Throughout the year, Gretsch will celebrate by introducing new lines of limited edition anniversary drums, guitars, and other Gretsch products; conducting an online search for the world’s best unsigned bands; and hosting a major concert event in New York City featuring an illustrious lineup of “Gretsch Greats.”

“It’s quite exciting to reach this remarkable milestone,” said President Fred W. Gretsch. “We owe our many years of success to four generations of Gretsch owners and the dedicated men and women on their team who were – and are – passionate about great music and high-quality instruments.” (more…)

Jimmie Webster: A Great Gretsch Ambassador

Saturday, January 5th, 2008

Jimmie Webster: Gretsch Celebrates the 100th Birthday of a Colorful Musician, Inventor, and Traveling Ambassador for Gretsch Guitars.

Jimmie Webster was born on August 11, 1908 in Van Wert, Ohio into a very musical family. Both parents played as well as taught piano and his sister, Virginia, became a well-respected jazz pianist. Keeping the family tradition alive, Webster excelled at piano but also had a passion for the guitar.

In the 1930s Webster was a professional musician in the New York City area and married L’Ana Hyams, one of the first women jazz bandleaders. Webster was also an in-demand professional piano tuner, ran a small music store, and began doing a little consulting work for the Gretsch Company.

During World War II Webster served as a musician in the U.S. Air Corps in Iceland. After the war, Webster moved to Long Island, N.Y. where he became more involved with the Gretsch Company. Webster’s long association with Gretsch guitars would span four decades. (more…)