It may have been a chilly evening in NYC but the scene was HOT inside the Highline Ballroom as friends, family & associates gathered to celebrate the Gretsch 125th Anniversary on Tuesday, November 18. What better way to honor this momentous occasion than to gather some of the most renowned musicians & bands in the world and simply ROCK THE HOUSE!
The night opened with Colourslide, the Gainesville, Florida-based band that was chosen from among 879 world-wide entrants as the winner of the Next Gretsch Greats Unsigned Artist Competition.
Next up was David Lee & His Mercenaries. This Gretsch guitar artist instantly got the house jumping with his special brand of “psychobilly” rock.
International pop/rock stars Fountains of Wayne followed, making a rare club appearance. The Grammy-nominated band is best known for the hit single “Stacy’s Mom,” and for albums like Welcome Interstate Managers and Traffic and Weather.
The evening’s house band was anchored by tour and studio drum great Stephen Ferrone (Tom Petty, Eric Clapton) and former Saturday Night Live guitarist and musical director G. E. Smith. Keyboard star Chuck Leavell (The Rolling Stones band) served as the house band’s musical director. Also from the Rolling Stones band was legendary first-call pop and jazz saxophonist Tim Ries. One of today’s most in-demand bass players, Andy Hess, along with innovative jazz guitarist and composer, Bob Sabellico rounded out the group.
To help the Gretsch Company celebrate this special occasion, several leading members of the musical manufacturing industry signed on as co-sponsors. Accordingly, Gretsch, along with industry partners Fender Musical Instruments and Kaman Music Corporation, welcomed the participation of the D’Addario Corporation (makers of Evans Drumheads, HQ Percussion products, and D’Addario guitar strings and accessories), along with Remo, Inc. (makers of Remo drumheads and percussion instruments) and Sabian Cymbals. Also celebrating their 125th anniversary this year, Wente Vineyards, supplied a selection of outstanding vintages for the event.
Story & Photos courtesy: Gretsch Guitars