Archive for the ‘Gretsch News’ Category

Gretsch on Display in Savannah and Frankfurt

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

The Savannah Music Festival is currently running through April 3 and is dedicated to presenting the finest in American and international musical talent. Read the full story.  

Musikmesse in Frankfurt, Germany was held March 24 through March 27.  Check out Fred Gretsch’s daily show report below.

Savannah Music Festival:

The Savannah Music Festival is currently running through April 3 and is dedicated to presenting the finest in American and international musical talent. So it’s logical that the Festival would want their stages equipped with the finest drums available. Fortunately, the Savannah suburb of Pooler, Georgia is home to the company that makes the world’s finest drums: Gretsch.

Gretsch USA Custom Kit in Rosewood

But there’s much more to Gretsch’s involvement in the Savannah Music Festival than a hometown connection. The producers of the Fest understand that Gretsch USA Custom kits represent the ultimate in hand-crafted quality. Manufactured in nearby Ridgeland, South Carolina, Gretsch USA Custom drums feature specially configured maple shells with Gretsch’s original Silver Sealer inner finish, 30-degree bearing edges, die-cast hoops, and hand-applied outer finishes—all factors that contribute to the creation of “That Great Gretsch Sound.” The kits for the Festival are equipped with Gibraltar and Dixon stands and hardware provided by Gretsch distribution partner KMC Music.

Gretsch USA Drum Manufacturing production manager Paul Cooper and production assistant Josh Safer (both talented drummers in their own right) worked closely with Ricardo Ochoa, the Savannah Music Festival’s production director, to provide five Gretsch USA Custom kits for use on the various Festival stages. These kits will be played by the drummers for many of the Festival’s high-profile artists, including country singers Kathy Mattea and Patty Loveless, rocker Derek Trucks, the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Henry Butler & Friends, zydeco specialists Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys, and soul singer Kristina Train.

The Savannah Music Festival is Georgia’s largest musical arts festival and one of the most distinctive cross-genre music festivals in the world. The event regularly presents commissioned works, unique and imaginative productions, and rare regional appearances by renowned artists in jazz, classical, blues, bluegrass, gospel and other styles of American and international roots music. More information is available at For more information about Gretsch drums, go to

Musikmesse – Fred Gretsch’s Show Report:

Day 1:  

Gretsch Guitars on Display

So many Gretsch team members in Frankfurt for Messe. Sales, marketing, manufacturing, all assembled to greet customers. Best Gretsch Guitar and Drum display ever. . . that is the challenge so check it out to see if you agree that we have hit that mark again.

Gretsch Drums on Display

It’s always a kick to come into the hall on the first day and see all the carpets and drapes and flowers in place and looking super. The entire Gretsch Guitar and Drum display is in one stand in Hall 4 on the ground level. That is the first time in 10 years that we have it all consolidated. Stop by and say hello if you are here. Come on down, weather in Frankfurt, Germany is spring like.

Day 2:

Larger crowds at the Messe today. Visitors from as far away as New Zealand stopped by and many more from places like Croatia, Brazil, Israel, and more. And the noise level goes up . . . though there is a new 70 db noise level limit at displays. Not sure if it is enforced. The weather continues to cooperate with bands playing on the courtyard between Halls 3 and 4 in the warm afternoon. Photos posted shows the Gretsch Drum and Guitar displays that are located in the same stand (booth) in Hall 4. Friday attendance to rise further in anticipation of Saturday, the big attendance public day.

Day 3:

Messe Grounds

My first Messe was in 1971. Gretsch was here after the war in 1955. One thing we are researching is Gretsch participation at fairs (Messe means fair) before the war. We know that there was a Gretsch company office in Markneukirchen, Germany in the 1920s for many years up to WW2. So it is easy to take for granted so many things about Messe. Back in ‘71 there was just one large hall, #8, that made up the Musikmesse then. Since they have built out the fairgrounds to be truly spectacular. Visit to see the fair layout today with all the halls being used, central courtyard, and facilities that sparkle.

Dick Dale had an interesting comment after signing autographs at the fair yesterday: more people on an escalator than he has seen anywhere. Dick is here through Saturday which is the public day when the crowds are spectacular. At NAMM the Eddie Cochran guitar was in a glass case, at messe it is hung up with all others to be played and checked out by all. Lots of up close and personal contact at Messe. Peter, a local musician stopped by enroute to a gig at Shadow where he will be playing zitar electronically. Cool. He has lots of Gretsch guitars too. Plenty of Duane Eddy fans here, too, waiting for the next Gretsch Duane Eddy model . . .  Stay tuned and check for more news.

Day 4:

Today we had visitors and friends from South Africa, Turkey, and old friend Bernhardt from Hamburg too. Several bearing gifts for our trip home. As predicted, the  crowds grew throughout the day as did the loud performances. Must be a finesse to the noice control that we have yet to understand.

Memories, too, from my first Messe show in 1971 when the whole event was in Hall 8. Frankfurt was under heavy construction for a new subway back then and it took a decade or more to complete it. All very modern and conveninet at the moment. It is a tickless system with signs saying that if you get caught without a ticket, the fine is 40 Euro and there are no excuses. Fortunately, the Messe ticket provides travel on the trains and busses so not to worry.

Messe Attracts Many Visitors

Get ready for Saturday public day when the halls will be crowded to a point where some places you can’t even move. The good thing is all are enthusiastic music makers out to see the latest gear. At the Gretsch Guitar booth today we spotted a couple photographing their 2-year-old son in a stroller in front of a row of Gretsch Guitars. Wonder where that picture will be 10 years from now.

Final Day & Post-Show:

More than 2,300 exhibitors and 110,000 visitors . . . that’s the tally for Messe Frankfurt for 2010. The numbers are very close to last year which is a good sign for business in the year ahead. Messe 2011 will be in early April and that’s already on our calendar.

A trip to Germany would not be complete without a chance to sample the culture in Frankfurt and again in Dusseldorf. Saturday evening was festive in Frankfurt with music playing in public areas around town and crowds out enjoying the pre-Easter atmosphere. Accordion music is front and center and they celebrate Easter season with a greater flair than in the USA.

Monday we visited the FMIC regional office in Dusseldorf that services 6 countries with ample multi-lingual staff, repair facilities, and a custom shop showroom.

Spring is just getting started and we got to experience Daylight Savings Time in Europe for a second time in 2010 as we “sprung forward” 1 hour early Sunday the 28th. It may be the only time we ever get to do that twice in the same season in the same year again.

The trip home on the Delta non-stop from Dusseldorf to Atlanta of 9+ hours included many musicians carrying their guitars, some of which were Gretsch guitars. One band was returning from a mission trip to the Czech Republic. We sensed that there were US Air Marshals on the flight as well providing an extra level of security. Thanks go out to them and all those who keep us safe.

Weather in Georgia is in the high 70’s and sunny. Back in the saddle again . . .

Oscar Winner Jeff Bridges Slings Gretsch Guitar

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Our congratulations goes to Jeff Bridges for winning the Best Actor Oscar for his role as Bad Blake in the film Crazy Heart.  Frequently seen on stage in the movie playing a Gretsch G6122 1959 Chet Akins Country Gentleman, Bridges gave a brilliant and highly-praised performance.  Check out the great photo of Jeff with the Gretsch Country Gentleman in Monday’s edition of USA Today.  More information can also be found at


Gretsch G6122 1959 Chet Atkins Country Gentleman

Ladies First . . . A Salute To Gretsch’s Distaff Side

Monday, February 15th, 2010

We love to showcase Gretsch artists here on And we particularly love to feature female artists, because . . . well, frankly, there aren’t enough of them in the music business today, and we’d like to see that change. So it’s with great pleasure that we’re currently featuring not one but two terrific female musicians in the Featured Artist section of

Cindy Blackman

Dinah & Fred Gretsch with Cindy Blackman (Photo by Dino Perucci)

Dinah & Fred Gretsch with Cindy Blackman (Photo by Dino Perucci)

While, as we said, females are under-represented among all instrumentalists, it’s particularly rare to find a high-profile, multi-talented woman behind a set of drums. But that’s exactly where you’ll find the great Cindy Blackman. Actually, Cindy is no stranger to drummers “in the know.” She’s been a legitimate drumming star for many years. She’s perhaps best known to the music world in general as the driving force behind rocker Lenny Kravitz—a position she’s held for approximately fourteen years. But Cindy is also a dyed-in-the-wool jazzer, with a particular reverence for the legendary Tony Williams (himself a long-time Gretsch artist). Cindy has several critically-acclaimed jazz albums as a bandleader to her credit, and she’s appeared at many of the major jazz and music festivals. You can learn more about Cindy’s past and present career at

Lynda Kay

Fred Gretsch & Joe Carducci with Lynda Kay

Fred Gretsch & Joe Carducci with Lynda Kay

While it’s not so rare to see a female country singer in the spotlight these days, it is rare to see one whose singing style is tied to a particular guitar. But that’s the case with Lynda Kay, an artist who’s  described as being “like Patsy Cline and Kitty Wells all rolled up into one.” The Texas-born singer/guitarist conjures the ghosts of classic country’s past, including the songwriting influences of Willie Nelson and Roy Orbison. Her voice—which has been described as “furiously beautiful” and “fringed with hand-wringing regret”—is complemented perfectly by the twangy sound of her recently re-issued Gretsch 6130 Knotty Pine Roundup guitar. It’s a match made in musical heaven. Find out more at

Gretsch salutes these two talented ladies. And we encourage all musically-inclined women out there to take Cindy and Lynda as examples and inspirations. Get out there and play!

Other Great Gretsch Ladies:

Drums -

Stefanie Eulinberg, Kid Rock

Hannah Ford

Caitlin Kalafus, Kicking Daisies

Debbi Peterson, The Bangles

Guitar -

Amy Surdu & Marlene Hammerle, Gore Gore Girls

Annie Clements, Sugarland

Elaine Frizzell

Elizabeth Elkins, The Swear

Rosie Flores

KT Tunstall

Read Expanded NAMM Show Coverage

Monday, January 25th, 2010

The 2010 NAMM musical instrument show was held this past January 14 through 17 at the Anaheim Convention Center in California. This annual event, sponsored by the International Music Products Association, is America’s largest trade show for the showcasing of musical instruments and accessories.

Gretsch Drums On Display

Gretsch Drums had plenty of great new gear to showcase at this year’s NAMM show. Here are just a few highlights:

US Custom Kits

Gretsch 2010 Ltd Ed USA Custom Black & Silver

Gretsch 2010 Ltd Ed USA Custom Black and Silver (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

Two new Limited Edition USA Custom kits headed up the new-product introductions. One featured an 18×22 bass drum, 8×10 and 9×10 toms, a 16×16 floor tom, and a 6½x14 ten-lug snare—each with a black lacquer finish and silver-sparkle inlays. The other featured a 14×18 bass drum, an 8×12 tom, a 14×14 floor tom, and a 5½ x14 eight-lug snare—all in a classy white finish with a gold sparkle inlays and gold-plated hardware. Each configuration will be limited to thirty total kits worldwide.

New Renown Maple Finish

Gretsch Renown Maple Ruby Sparkle Fade

Gretsch Renown Maple Ruby Sparkle Fade (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

The Gretsch Renown Maple series now offers a striking new finish called Ruby Sparkle Fade. It features mixed-size sparkle flakes that catch and reflect light differently so as to give the finish extra depth and richness. Three sizes of flakes are carefully applied in descending size—large to medium to small. Then each drum is hand-sprayed with a customized ruby red-to-ebony black fade paint. A highly detailed, multi-step lacquering process provides the final touch for a gleaming finish.

Stanton Moore Signature Snare

Stantion Moore Signature Snare

Stanton Moore Signature Snare (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

Gretsch artist Stanton Moore has developed a reputation for his distinctive blend of New Orleans-influenced funky snare-drum grooves. Now Gretsch has collaborated with Stanton to create a snare drum that projects that swampy, nuanced style. The Stanton Moore Signature snare features a single-ply solid-maple shell with reinforcement hoops, thirty-degree bearing edges, eight tuning lugs, a Dunnett throw-off, 42-strand snares, and a gloss natural finish emblazoned with Stanton’s signature. The drum is designed to provide quick response, varying timbres, and a distinctive overall tonality.

Fred And Dinah Gretsch Meet The CoverBand 2010 Drum Winner

A special treat for Fred and Dinah Gretsch was the opportunity to congratulate Didi Negron of Northampton, Pennsylvania, who was the winning drummer in the CoverBand 2010 contest presented by Musician’s Friend and Latin Percussion. Gretsch Drums was a contributing sponsor for the online competition.

CoverBand 2010 Winner Didi Negron

CoverBand 2010 Winning Drummer Didi Negron (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

The contest invited individual musicians and vocalists to upload a two-minute video to between July 15 and September 15 of last year. A general-public vote determined the finalists. A panel of celebrity judges then selected the winners.

A trip to Anaheim to perform at the NAMM show was part of the prize for the seven winning CoverBand members. For twenty-three-year-old Didi Negron, that was just part of the thrill. She also received a brand-new Gretsch Catalina Ash drumkit, along with the chance to meet Fred and Dinah Gretsch personally. (Didi’s prize package also included Sabian HHX cymbals and a Gibraltar Stealth rack system.)

Dinah Gretsch was particularly pleased to meet Didi, since female participation in music is an issue that’s near and dear to Dinah’s heart. When Dinah asked Didi how she came to be a drummer, Didi replied, “I grew up with music in my family. My dad plays guitar and bass, and there was a lot of music in our church. When I was around eight I started playing along to records. I developed rudimental drumming skills when I was in my school marching band. When I was a teenager I started playing drumset and percussion, and things just went from there.”

Things went pretty far, as a matter of fact. Didi’s self-taught drumming skills were impressive enough to earn a scholarship to the prestigious Berklee College Of Music in Boston. Now in her second year, she’s studying with such well-known drummers as Ralph Peterson, Terri-Lyne Carrington, Dave DiCenso, and Eddie Castillo. Not surprisingly, Didi’s goal is to become a professional drummer/percussionist. “It’s all I’ve ever really thought about,” she said.

Didi’s entry for the CoverBand 2010 contest displayed the influence of her Berklee instructors, along with a substantial amount of her own talent and originality. Her two-minute video was a mix of Latin, pop, and fusion-esque styles that burned and grooved at the same time. “I love to solo,” said Didi, “but I love a pocket, too. So for my contest entry I decided to show the groove . . . show the chops . . . just do it all!”

Stephen Ferrone & Gretsch Drums In Concert

An annual highlight of the NAMM show is an after-hours concert called Sabian Live!, presented by the Sabian Cymbal Company (and co-sponsored by Gretsch Drums). This year’s event opened and closed with Gretsch artists.

Sabian Live! Drummer    Photo by Rick Van Horn

Sabian Live! Drummer (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

The opening act was a band of teenage musicians from the Little Kids Rock music-education program. Their performance was powered by a young drummer playing on a Gretsch Catalina Ash kit. What the band lacked in experience they made up for in enthusiasm, and their two-song set was well received by the audience.

At the absolute opposite of the experience scale was the evening’s closer: Stephen Ferrone & The Master Volume All-Stars. Made up of the cream of LA’s studio scene, the band was anchored by its namesake drummer, whose credits include the Average White Band, Eric Clapton, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, and hundreds of studio projects.

Stephen Ferrone  (Photo by Jules Follett)

Stephen Ferrone (Photo by Jules Follett)

The evening’s audience was treated to a widely varying repertoire that included songs from all of Ferrone’s previous groups, as well as tunes by guest artists. These included “You Need a Man” and “Your Mama Don’t Dance,” led by surprise guest Jimmy Messina. The evening closed with a spirited rendition of “Man in The Mirror,” in tribute to Michael Jackson. Throughout the entire set Stephen Ferrone provided his legendary combination of groove, drive, and taste.

Gretsch Guitars Launches The Eddie Cochran Tribute Model

Gretsch Eddie Cochran Tribute Guitar (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

Gretsch Eddie Cochran Tribute Guitar (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

Gretsch Guitars is famous for maintaining the highest standards of contemporary quality while still honoring the musical contributions made by great artists of the past. In keeping with that tradition, Gretsch Guitars debuted the Eddie Cochran Tribute model at this year’s NAMM show.

Eddie Cochran was a pioneer of rock ‘n’ roll. Starting out in country music in the early 1950s, he quickly gravitated toward the music being popularized by Gene Vincent, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Elvis Presley. In short order he became a contemporary of those stars, appearing in concerts and films throughout the mid to late ’50s. But besides being a talented vocalist, Cochran’s skill as a guitarist set him apart, and it earned him a place as one of Gretsch’s first rock ‘n’ roll endorsing artists.

Cochran was also a talented songwriter, and his teen-angst classic “Summertime Blues” has been covered by hundreds of artists including The Who and Blue Cheer. Tragically, his career was cut short by an auto accident in London on April 17, 1960. Eddie was only twenty-one.

Eddie Cochran Tribute Display

Eddie Cochran Tribute Display (Photo by Rick Van Horn)

The NAMM launch of the Gretsch Eddie Cochran Tribute guitar was accompanied by an extensive historic display featuring photos, records, and other memorabilia from Eddie’s meteoric career. Additionally, Fred Gretsch was on hand to underscore the personal connection between Gretsch Guitars and Eddie Cochran’s legacy.

2010 Gretsch Showcase

The Eddie Cochran Tribute guitar launch was celebrated with a pre-NAMM performance at the Gretsch Guitars booth on Wednesday, January 13. Bobby Cochran—Eddie’s nephew and a fine guitarist in his own right—was backed by Gretsch artist Paul Pigat and his band Uncle Harley on a rendition of Eddie’s classic “Summertime Blues” that delighted the specially invited audience. Meanwhile, models strutted at the foot of the stage displaying Gretsch’s iconic new G6120 guitars.

Paul Pigat

Paul Pigat

Wednesday’s performance kicked off the 2010 Gretsch Showcase. Throughout the NAMM show weekend a roster of stellar Gretsch artists entertained showgoers while demonstrating the unique sound and features of Gretsch guitars. Besides Paul Pigat & Cousin Harley, the lineup featured rockabilly artists including Brophy Dale, Mad Max & the Wild Ones, the Hot Rod Trio, and Buzz Campbell & Hot Rod Lincoln. In addition, Lynda Kay brought her Americana roots style country music to the Gretsch booth, while rock guitar legend Steve Hunter & The Hurricanes proved that you can play blues on a Gretsch guitar.



On Friday the 15th the self-described “femme fatale punk rock” quartet Civet strutted their stuff. Friday’s Showcase was also notable for an appearance by Dhani Harrison playing a G6129T-1957 Silver Jet onstage during a performance by thenewno2’s. Dhani is the talented son of legendary Beatle and solo artist George Harrison, who helped Gretsch sell a ton of Duo Jet, Tennesseean, and Country Gentleman guitars.

Tim Armstrong

Tim Armstrong

Punk-rock mainstays Rancid rocked the booth on Saturday the 16th in front of a crowd that was so big it drew the attention of the fire marshal. Rancid’s performance also served to showcase the debut of guitarist/lead singer Tim Armstrong’s new Signature G5191BK Electromatic hollow-body guitar. It’s designed after the 1971 Country Club model that Armstrong has favored for decades. When asked what he particularly loved about his new Signature model, Armstrong replied, “The simplest way for me to explain it is that the sound is full-bodied and thick. I hear the chords as if I’m playing a piano.”

Special Appearances

In addition to the musical performances that highlighted the 2010 Gretsch Showcase, the Gretsch booth featured appearances by several notable individuals. Perhaps the most eye-catching of these was Great Gretsch Girl Kim Falcon, who was on hand to greet visitors and sign autographs throughout the NAMM weekend.

On Saturday the Gretsch booth was graced by a visit from twangy-guitar pioneer and Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame inductee Duane Eddy. Duane and his wife Deed were hosted at the booth by Fred Gretsch himself, who enjoyed the opportunity to hang out with this musical icon.

For more information and detailed coverage, go to the “News” section of

Gretsch’s 127th Year Promises Great Things

Monday, January 4th, 2010

As the Gretsch Company plans its 127th year in business, one event already on the calendar is the 20th Annual Chicago Drum Show. America’s premier vintage and custom drum event, the Chicago Drum Show will be held May 15 and 16, 2010 at the Kane County Fairgrounds, 525 South Randall Rd, St. Charles, Illinois.

Fred & Dinah Gretsch

Fred & Dinah Gretsch

Fred Gretsch is the perfect candidate to make a historical presentation at the Chicago Show, since as the fourth generation of Gretsch drum makers he personally embodies a major part of American drum-making history. He also holds the enviable position of being the only man in America still actively involved with the drums that have born his family name for 127 years.

Friedrich Gretsch

Friedrich Gretsch

The Gretsch family dynasty began in 1883, when a young German immigrant named Friedrich Gretsch founded a little shop in Brooklyn, New York. From that day to this, the Gretsch family has focused on making drums that offer unrivaled sound and uncompromising construction quality.

Friederich Gretsch passed away suddenly while on a trip to his homeland, leaving the company to his fifteen-year-old son, Fred Gretsch—who was still in knickers at the time. Energetic as he was enterprising, Fred Gretsch Sr. built the business on a reputation for precision and quality. Two decades after assuming direction of the company, he moved the operation to a ten-story building at 60 Broadway in Brooklyn in order to respond to the growing demand for more specialized instruments.

Fred Gretsch, Sr.

Fred Gretsch, Sr.

Fred Gretsch Sr. retired in 1942. His eldest son, Fred Jr., managed the operations briefly before leaving for wartime service as a commander in the Navy. Fred Sr.’s younger son Bill stayed to run the family business. Long-time Gretsch employee Duke Kramer said of Bill Gretsch that “He had a subtle talent for inspiring people to do their best, and his sense of humor was irresistible. When he passed away in 1948, a legion of individuals felt they lost their best friend.”

One of those individuals was Bill’s son, Fred W. Gretsch. Young Fred had worked summers in the factory under the tutelage of his grandfather, Fred Gretsch Sr., and he grew up with a deeply ingrained understanding and appreciation of what the Gretsch family legacy represented.
Fred Gretsch, Jr.

Fred Gretsch, Jr.


Fred Gretsch Jr. returned from the Navy to lead the company into a new age of prosperity. The popularity of Gretsch drums grew with the explosion of rockabilly and rock ’n’ roll in the 1950s and ’60s, attracting famous endorsees including Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts.

Bill Gretsch

Bill Gretsch

In 1967 the Gretsch Company was sold to Baldwin, a music industry giant. But without the family dedication that had driven the business for so many years, the company began to falter. As a testament to his passion for the family business, Fred W. Gretsch, vowed to one day regain control.

In 1985, Fred made good on his promise. He bought The Gretsch Company back from Baldwin and moved its operations to Savannah, Georgia. There the revitalized company began to offer new custom-crafted Gretsch drums. The new products were immediately successful, and The Gretsch Company once again became a leading force in the musical instrument industry

Blending an emphasis on hand-craftsmanship with constant innovation, Gretsch has pioneered new drum designs and manufacturing techniques for well over a century. These include the first ply drumshells and the use of die-cast hoops. Today, Gretsch drums are the preferred instruments of drummers looking for unique tonal quality and hand-made craftsmanship. So it’s not surprising that the Gretsch artist roster boasts some of drumming’s most respected artists, including Vinnie Colaiuta, Charlie Watts, Mark Schulman, and Phil Collins. Talented up-and-comers like Hannah Ford, who’ll be appearing at the Chicago Show as a featured clinician, also recognize and endorse the unique qualities of Gretsch drums.

Fred W. Gretsch’s presentation at the Chicago Drum Show will be a celebration of four generations of family and musical history, as well as a look forward to the next 125 years of “That Great Gretsch Sound!” Don’t miss it!

Fred Thanks FMIC’s Team Gretsch

Monday, December 28th, 2009

On Thursday, December 3, Fred Gretsch hosted a special luncheon in honor of the Gretsch Guitar team at Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) at a chic Italian restaurant in Scottsdale.  The luncheon was attended by many key staff who work with the Gretsch brand including Joe Carducci, Gretsch guitar marketing manager, and members of the sales team, tech services, consumer & customer support, the parts department, and more.

Gretsch Guitar Team Receives Certificate

Gretsch Guitar Team Receives Certificate

To show his appreciation of the team’s hard work, commitment, and contribution to the Gretsch legacy, Fred, with Joe’s assistance, presented each member with a certificate of recognition.

Founded in 1883 as a manufacturer of string instruments and drums in Brooklyn, NY, the Gretsch Company has produced some of the world’s greatest guitars and drums over the span of four generations.  With its emphasis on hand-craftsmanship and commitment to quality, Gretsch has pioneered new designs and manufacturing techniques, winning endorsements from some of the music industry’s most respected artists.  Without the dedicated service of many Gretsch employees, such as those at FMIC, Gretsch could not have successfully sustained the vision of company founder, Friedrich Gretsch, these past 126 years.

Thanks again “Team Gretsch” for all you do every day in support of the Gretsch brand and business.  As we prepare to begin year 127, we look forward to continuing our great working relationship with you.

Christmas Cheer at Gretsch

Monday, December 21st, 2009

The holiday season is a great time to reach out to the community.  This year we were happy to have been involved in a couple very worthy events.
Christmas 4 Kids:

Christmas 4 Kids is an organization with a goal of making Christmas a happy and joyful time for some special children in the Nashville community.  Throughout the year they raise funds for a very special two-day event held each December.  The Gretsch

Winning bidder of Gretsch 6120

Winning bidder of Gretsch 6120

Foundation was very pleased to have contributed a Gretsch 6120 guitar for their annual autographed guitar auction this year.  At a benefit concert held the Monday before Thanksgiving, the guitar was auctioned off to the highest bidder and became a major part of that night’s earnings

Tour Bus Show

Tour Bus Show

Day one, The Tour Bus Show, was held on December 14. On this day the public has the opportunity to tour buses of some of their favorite country music stars.  The bus companies and artists generously lend their buses for the event.  This year the Tour Bus Show had 60+ buses on site, and several artists from Gretchen Wilson to Darryl Worley available to sign autographs.  The weather was perfect and the crowd had a ball.

Shopping Day

Shopping Day

Day two, the kids shopping day, was held on December 15. On this day all the buses are sent to area schools to pick up participating children. The children are taken to enjoy a meal at a local church as well as a photo session with Santa.  They are then taken for a fun-filled day of shopping.  This year Christmas 4 Kids had over 400 children included.  Because of generous donations from special contributors, they were able to increase the children’s spending money from $150 per child to $175.  Each child also received a goody bag filled with donations from soccer balls to stuffed animals, in addition to a free Titans coat they get every year.
To learn more about Christmas 4 Kids, visit
The Salvation Army:

Area Students Help With Bell Ringing

Area Students Help With Bell Ringing

The Salvation Army endeavors to keep the real meaning of the season from being forgotten at Christmas.  Their red kettle bell ringing collects million of dollars in generous donations each year. These donations provide Christmas meals and other items such as clothing and gifts to families in need.

Gretsch employees and friends annually participate in The Salvation Army’s bell ringing in the Savannah area.  This year staff took shifts on Saturday, December 19 at the Sam’s Club in Pooler.  A group of enthusiastic honor students from Richmond Hill High School also participated earlier in the month. They helped spread some extra Christmas cheer by playing Christmas music and caroling while collecting donations.

Donations Make a Difference

Donations Make a Difference

To learn more about the Salvation Army, visit

Gretsches to Grace Cover of Smart Living

Monday, December 14th, 2009

Fred and Dinah Gretsch, owners of the Savannah-based Gretsch Company and residents of nearby Pooler, Georgia, will grace the cover of Smart Living magazine’s first edition of 2010.

Smart Living is a publication of the St. Joseph’s/Candler Healthcare System, which is highly regarded as the premier health provider in the Savannah region. The magazine brings together knowledge and insight from physicians and medical experts, and also features entertaining and informative stories about compelling personalities in and from the area. Past interview subjects have included actress Olympia Dukakis, Arizona Cardinals receiver Ben Patrick, and sailing guru/TV commentator Gary Jobson.

Gretsch Smart Living CoverFred and Dinah Gretsch were chosen for Smart Living’s cover in recognition of their accomplishments within the musical instrument manufacturing industry. The story—titled “Married To The Music: Fred and Dinah Gretsch Keep Their Signature Sound in the Family”—also details their ongoing focus on the family nature of the almost 127-year-old Gretsch Company, as well as their contributions to the arts through the Gretsch Foundation.

Online and print versions of Smart Living are scheduled for release on January 2. For more information on Smart Living magazine, visit For more information on the Gretsch Company, visit